Highway accident claims two lives

A three-vehicle accident on U.S. Highway 83 in southern Scott County on Wednesday resulted in a double fatality.


According to a Kansas Highway Patrol crash log, a 2007 Peterbilt semi tractor-trailer, driven by Brian L. Lytle, 45, McCook, Neb. was traveling north on U.S. Highway 83, as a 2010 Chevrolet Silverado, driven by Steven Craig Gruver, 60, Scott City was traveling south on the highway. A 2021 Freightliner semi tractor-trailer, driven by Benjamin Keith Gilbert, 56, Jamestown, Ks., was southbound behind the Gruver vehicle.


Gruver’s vehicle initiated a left turn onto Scott County Road 30, entering the northbound lane of the highway, directly in the path of Lytle’s vehicle.


Lytle’s vehicle collided with Gruver’s vehicle, causing Gruver’s vehicle to rotate counterclockwise in a northwestern direction. Gruver’s vehicle then collided with Gilbert’s vehicle.


Gruver’s vehicle came to a stop in the northbound lane. Lytle’s vehicle came to rest in the northbound ditch and Gilbert’s vehicle cam to rest on the southbound shoulder.


Gruver, and a passenger in his vehicle, James D. Hickert, 37, Bird City, Ks., were pronounced dead at the scene. Neither were wearing a seat belt.


Lytle, not wearing a seat belt, had no apparent injuries. Gilbert, wearing a seat belt, had no apparent injuries.