Some scary statistics coming out of Mercer County concerning fatal car crashes.
So far this year, the department has handled nine fatal car crashes-- resulting in 14 deaths on Mercer County roadways. Four of those deaths occurring in the just the last eight days. Two of the crashes have been heroin related, one involved alcohol, and blood test results are still out on four of them. The crashes are taking place across the county and involve drivers of all ages. Mercer County Sheriff Jeff Grey says he's not sure what can be done to prevent the crashes.
There are typically three deputies out on roadways at any given time in Mercer County-- including this weekend when two fatal crashes took place. A unique situation led to one death on Sunday morning. The department got a report of horses that escaped from their enclosure on State Route 49. The animals were on the side of the roadway when the deputy responded. He left the area to contact the animal's owner, who is Amish.
Typically when animals are on the roads, the deputy stays nearby with lights flashing. However, since the owner of the animal, Joe Schwartz, does not own a phone, the deputy drove to the house for help. On the way back to round up the animals, the deputy and Schwartz witnessed the fatal crash.