Custer County fatal crash July 11; Public assists in emergency situation

Nebraska State Patrol

Numerous members of the public responded to assist in an emergency situation Thursday morning near Merna. The situation occurred after a crash on Highway 92 that left one person dead and three others injured.

At approximately 8:40 a.m. Thursday (July 11, 2019), a 2002 Dodge pickup crossed the center line on Highway 92 and struck a 2016 Ford F-350, pulling a trailer hauling a skid loader. The crash happened approximately 2 miles west of Merna.

The driver of the Dodge, Roman Romero, 40, of Temple, Texas, was pronounced deceased at the scene. The crash caused the Ford’s trailer break loose, tip, and pin the skid loader against the Ford pickup as the pickup rolled onto the driver’s side.

The front seat passenger in the Ford pickup was able to get out of the truck, but the driver, Kevin Jensen, 49, of Broken Bow and rear passenger were trapped in the truck. The two passengers were Jensen’s twin sons, Brock and Erik Jensen, 19, also of Broken Bow. Brock Jensen was the front seat passenger and was able to escape the truck to flag down help.

As rescue personnel arrived on scene, it became apparent that help would be necessary to free the two men trapped in the pickup. Volunteers from the Merna, Broken Bow, and Arnold Fire Departments responded, as well as personnel from Hunter Towing, Myers Construction, the Custer County Sheriff’s Office, Nebraska State Patrol, Good Samaritan Air Care, LifeNet Air ambulance, Custer Public Power, and even nearby farmers and community members.

After approximately three hours, crews were able to free the two men, who were then life-flighted to Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney. Erik Jensen has since been released from the hospital and Kevin Jensen is in good condition as of Friday morning.

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