Chesterton Tribune



Teen dies in crash on US 12

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A 15-year-old girl died in a single-vehicle accident on Saturday on U.S. Highway 12 in Porter.

Porter County Coroner Cyndi Dykes has identified the victim as Cher’lin Hollowell. Dykes did not specify her place of residence but Porter Fire Chief Jay Craig believes all four occupants of the vehicle, ranging in age from 17 to 15, lived in the Portage area.

According to a report released this morning by Porter Police, at 5:34 p.m. the driver of the vehicle, a Kia four-door, was westbound on U.S. 12, just west of Mineral Springs Road. “The driver, a juvenile, indicated that she was passing vehicles and lost control after hitting a wet spot in the road,” the PPD said. “The driver indicated that she was following friends in a vehicle ahead.”

A witness advised investigators that the Kia was traveling at a high rate of speed when the driver lost control, that the Kia then hit a guardrail on the north side, re-entered the westbound lanes, crossed the center line, and left the roadway to the south, where it hit a tree head on.

Dykes said that Cher’lin Hollowell--one of two backseat passengers and believed not to have been wearing a seatbelt--was pronounced dead at the scene.

Porter firefighters performed minor extrication to remove both backseat passengers from the Kia, the other of whom was transported to the parking lot of Shelton Fireworks on U.S. Highway 20, where she was airlifted to Memorial Hospital in South Bend, Craig said.

The driver of the Kia was transported to Porter Regional Hospital and subsequently airlifted to an unspecified hospital, Craig said, while the front-seat passenger was transported to Methodist Hospital Northlake Campus in Gary, after no other helicopter was available to medivac her.

Assisting the PFD and PPD at the scene were Porter EMS and Burns Harbor EMS, Craig said. The landing zone at Shelton Fireworks was prepared by the Burns Harbor and Washington Township Volunteer FDs.

Craig noted that U.S. 12 had to be closed in both directions, resulting in a certain amount of congestion which made it briefly difficult to get one of the responding ambulances back on the road.

The PFD cleared the scene at around 9:30 p.m.



Posted 6/22/2020




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