• April 29, 2022

KSP Trooper Shawn Summers Injured in Truck Accident on I-70 near Ellis, KS

Ellis, KS -- April 26, 2022, Kansas Highway Patrol trooper Shawn Summers was injured when his patrol car was hit by a tractor-trailer on Interstate 70 near Ellis.

Authorities say the incident happened just before 9:00 a.m. on I-70, roughly a mile west of town. Preliminary investigation suggests Summers pulled a Volvo 18-wheeler over onto the right eastbound shoulder and was out of his Dodge Challenger patrol unit inspecting the truck. A short time later an eastbound Kenworth tractor-trailer failed to move over while passing the scene and instead drifted right over the fog line, hitting the Challenger and the Volvo semi-truck. Summers was also struck in the collision.

After the crash the Kenworth kept going east for a short distance before running off the road to the right. It crashed through a nearby fence and came to rest beyond it.

Summers was transported to a Hays hospital for evaluation and treatment of minor injuries. The Volvo and Kenworth drivers were reportedly uninjured.

No further information is currently available.

Commentary on Shawn Summers Accident on I-70 near Ellis

It's at least some silver lining to read there were only minor injuries here, but it's important people understand that these early reports don't always tell the whole story. Even supposedly minor injuries should be taken seriously, especially after a commercial vehicle wreck. There's no telling whether the aftermath is really as innocuous as reports say.

KSP Trooper Shawn Summers Injured in Truck Accident on I-70 near Ellis, KS

Here's an example of what I mean: I worked on a wreck a while back where our client's car was rear-ended by a commercial vehicle, resulting in a back injury. Doctors initially called it a simple sore back and sent him home with instructions to use a heating pad and take ibuprofen for the pain. He tried that, but days later the pain swelled until it was almost paralyzing. Another trip to the ER and some scans showed the crash actually ruptured a disk in his spine. He needed surgery and lengthy recovery before he could even partially resume his normal life. What police reports said was just a "minor" injury was really anything but.

Obviously I hope nothing like that happens after the Kansas wreck. We helped that man get back on his feet, but at no point was it simple and I wouldn't wish that trouble on anyone. If nothing else, though, it's one of the examples from my decades of work in this field that shows how important it is to take even seemingly-simple truck accidents seriously. Hopefully nothing that extreme happens after the wreck on I-70, but I see no reason that experienced professionals shouldn't look into things just to be safe.

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