By Tim Leeds
A teenager was killed and two companions were injured Sunday afternoon in a car crash north of Inverness.
The three were northbound in a Ford F-150 pickup about eight miles up the North Inverness Road about 4:15 p.m. when the driver lost control, the Montana Highway Patrol said. The truck skidded off the right side of the road into a field and rolled three times, MHP said.
The driver, a 16-year-old boy from Joplin, was partially ejected and was trapped under the vehicle. He died at the scene, MHP said.
A 15-year-old Chester boy was completely ejected from the vehicle, and a 16-year-old boy from Joplin also was injured. Both were taken to Liberty County Hospital.
The highway patrol did not release the names of any of the occupants. The conditions of the two survivors was not available today.
An MHP dispatcher in Helena said speed was a factor in the accident. It occurred on a straight stretch of gravel road. The road surface was dry.
Hill County Sheriff's deputies responded to the accident as well as Montana Highway Patrol officers. A woman with a minivan was stopping traffic south of the accident, keeping in contact with the officers on the scene with a police radio.
The Rudyard Fire Department ambulance was dispatched to the scene. There have been 195 fatal crashes in the state, with 224 deaths.
Chief Bert Obert of MHP said today the rate of fatalities on secondary roads has increased about 10 percent this year , putting it back to about the rate seen in 1999, he said.