A woman died in a serious motor vehicle crash that occurred near Rockerville, South Dakota, on Tuesday, July 24, 2012. The deadly collision occurred just before 7:00 p.m. in Pennington County. According to the South Dakota Highway Patrol, the crash involved an SUV and a motorcycle.
The Department of Public Safety reported that Kimberley Ericks, 36 years old and from Rapid City, was a passenger on a 2007 Suzuki VSR 1800 motorcycle being driven by Christopher Ericks, 38 years old and also of Rapid City. They were traveling southbound on US Highway 16 when Christopher Ericks tried to pass a 2007 Ford Escape. The Escape SUV was being driven by Louella Durfey, 64 years old and from Big Timber, Montana.
The crash occurred when Durfey tried to change lanes so that she could turn off the highway onto the Rockerville exit. It was at that time that the Escape hit the motorcycle, causing the motorcycle to skid through the off ramp. Unfortunately, both Kimberley and Christopher Ericks were thrown from the motorcycle when it skidded and then tumbled.
While Kimberley Ericks was wearing a helmet, she died from injuries caused by the crash. Christopher Ericks was not wearing a helmet and suffered serious, but not life-threatening, injuries. Durfey was not injured in the collision.
The South Dakota Highway Patrol is continuing its investigation into this serious SUV/motorcycle collision.
We are deeply saddened by this tragic event, and extend our sympathies to the family and friends of Kimberley Ericks, as well as any others impacted by this tragic accident.