A 45-year-old Stoddard woman became Vernon County’s first traffic fatality of 2014 April 21 following a head-on crash in Bergen township.
According to the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office in Viroqua, Eunice Beagle was driving a minivan southbound on Hwy. 35 just north of Windwalker Trail at 8 p.m. She attempted to pass another vehicle and collided head-on with a northbound
vehicle operated by Dorothy Roth, 68, of La Crosse.
The Stoddard-Bergen Fire Department removed both women from their vehicles. Both had been wearing seat belts, and air bags deployed in both vehicles.
The women were transported to Gundersen Health System in La Crosse, where Beagle died of her injuries. The Sheriff’s Office said in a press release that Roth was treated for multiple injuries.
The Vernon County Broadcaster of Viroqua reported that as of the morning of April 22, Gundersen Health System did not have a patient with Roth’s name in its care.
Chief Deputy Nathan Campbell told the Broadcaster that according to witnesses, Beagle pulled out of the southbound lane as if she was trying to pass a vehicle and the northbound lane was clear.
“It sounded like she didn’t see the other vehicle at all,” Campbell said. “We don’t know the reason for that.”
Assisting at the scene were the Shelby township Police Department, Stoddard-Bergen Fire Department and EMS, Tri-State Ambulance and Wisconsin State Patrol. Emergency workers were at the scene more than three hours.
The crash remains under investigation.