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Officials work the scene of a Minnesota-bound motor hom... Officials work the scene of a Minnesota-bound motor home on Sunday, April 1, 2012 in a ravine off Interstate 35 in northeast Kansas (AP).
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Authorities are investigating the cause of a motor home crash that killed 5 people from a Minnesota family and sent 13 others to hospitals.

The vehicle held 18 people and was pulling a trailer when it crashed Sunday around 9 a.m. on Interstate 35 in northeast Kansas, theKansas Highway Patrol said. It hit a guardrail and concrete bridge rail before crashing into a creek ravine near the small town of Williamsburg, which is located about 70 miles southwest of Kansas City, Mo. Debris was strewn around the crumpled Freightliner box truck, which had living quarters inside.

The survivors were sent to several surrounding hospitals. One of the hospitals, Overland Park Regional Medical Center, was treating Pauline Kerber, a 46-year-old widowed mother of 12 from Jordan, Minn., who was in critical but stable condition, and her 17-year-old son, Adam Kerber, who was in critical condition.

The hospital released a statement Sunday night on behalf of the family thanking the public for the "outpouring of love and support."

"We appreciate the prayers of so many, and appreciate you respecting our privacy as we mourn our deep loss," said the statement from the hospital, which also treated a critically injured 8-year-old boy before transferring him to a children's hospital. By Sunday night, at least five of the victims had been released from other hospitals in Topeka, Olathe and Ottawa.

The crash is under investigation. Trooper Don Hughes said he couldn't immediately release the names, ages or hometowns of the victims because their relatives were still being notified.

But John Marks, a close family friend of the Kerbers, told The Star Tribune in Minnesota that relatives had told him the dead include four of the Kerber children and one woman.

Kirk Nelson, superintendent of Jordan Public School District in Minnesota, said students had last week off for spring break, and students were scheduled to return Monday. The district planned to have several additional grief counselors and ministers on hand.

"It's a big shock to everybody, that's for sure," he said. "We've got some good staff, and they'll all come together," he said. "We'll get started on healing."



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  • 190 Comments
      mgh406
      • 3 Years Ago
      Sounds like this was not a motor home but a "jerry rigged" freightliner box truck which was not built for the purpose that it was being used.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @mgh406
        think again they make rv's this way.. also you can take any semi and set up a rv as long as it passes state inspection, your insurance inspection and deemed safe by both.
          • 3 Years Ago
          I agree. See my other post. I put links to pictures of the set up. My friend has a similar set up and he has to have a commercial drivers license to even drive it.
      • 3 Years Ago
      People that Have Nothin' nice to write should'nt do SO AT ALL...Ever thought "How" it would feel if somethin' like this were to happen to "YOUR" Family? Would Ya want people on the INTERNET, writin' TERRIBLE stuff...Sounds lIke to me that, A majority OF PEOPLE...DID'NT HAVE A GOOD UP BRINGIN'..CAUSE if they DID...THEY WOULD KNOW WHAT RESPECT IS!!!!!!!!! GOD BLESS~
        • 3 Years Ago
        I WOULD NOT TREAT MY FAMILY MEMBERS LIKE ANIMALS.. THIS IS BLATANTLY UNSAFE. I HOPE SOME RESPONSIBLE PERSON PAY FOR THIS!!!
      hamsterbdc
      • 3 Years Ago
      Very Sorry, but none the less breeders.......mother of 12!!
        • 3 Years Ago
        @hamsterbdc
        FYI, I WENT TO RATE this "THUMBS DOWN" And my keyboard stuck and Gave it a "THUMBS UP" .....MISTAKE..Def. THUMBS DOWN....JUST SAYIN'!!!!!!
      Denise
      • 3 Years Ago
      Condolences for the family(ies) of the deceased, but no motorhome is built to be hauling 18 people on the road; parked maybe, but not moving. That's what a bus is for.
        BOB
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Denise
        This was a heavy duty Freightliner TRUCK converted . You see them at the races all the time. Over loaded no, over populated yes. Distractions with all those kids doing what kids do yes.
      jimthegypsy
      • 3 Years Ago
      SPAM comments, like the one from LL, have no place on articles such as this. I just wonder how LL would like it if some idiot would post SPAM after news of his/her family members death.
      Diana
      • 3 Years Ago
      How very sad for this family. I question the legality of transporting this many people in a converted box trailer. It sounds very dangerous. RIP and may God bless them all.
        Susie
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Diana
        I DO NOT get this story. IT says a mobile home with 18 people in it towing what I presume to be a toy trailer with motorcycles in it. It says it hit the divider, went off the road and rolled. Then it just randomly drops in this: "It hit a guardrail and concrete bridge rail before crashing into a creek ravine near the small town of Williamsburg, which is located about 70 miles southwest of Kansas City, Mo. Debris was strewn around the crumpled Freightliner box truck, which had living quarters inside." Nowhere in the article did it say the Mobile home hit a freightliner box truck, which had living quarters inside, nor was their motorhome called that. Also a motorhome is not, and could not be a frieghtliner box truck right, and what they were towing was a trailor, also not a freightliner box truck. A freightliner box truck did not hit the motorhome, so WHERE IN THE HECK DOES THE FREIGHTLINER BOX TRUCK FIT IN? Seatbelts, nope folks dont use them much in motorhomes unless they are driving. AS mentioned above I dont think it would have helped either with the extent of the damage. Which is surprising to me also. How n the world did it sustain so much damage and so many people dead and critically injured? Article says it rolled over once? I don't know sounds more to it, the motorhome was going faster, it was a huge revene they rolled into, a long drop? Writer maybe run this by witnesses and stuff again and see if there is any new information as this doesnt mke any sense to me at least.
          auntginya
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Susie
          It was a triple axle box truck, converted with living quarters that the family was DRIVING, HAULING a triple axle trailer, converted to haul passengers. Did that help??? (Info came from the local newspaper, in NE Kansas!)
      sylvabugg2
      • 3 Years Ago
      People died because of someones serious lack of judgement. Who in their right mind lets a 17 year old drive that kind of rig?
        • 3 Years Ago
        @sylvabugg2
        Where does it say that the 17 year old was driving, I read that one of the survivors was a 17 year old.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @sylvabugg2
        It really hurts my heart that people have to find blame,and openly judge when this family has lost so many ..have we all not lacked good judgement ,have we all not bent a law or two? This is an ordinary family who need our support and prayers for now . may god comfort and strenghten this family and friends .
        • 3 Years Ago
        @sylvabugg2
        The article never said a 17 year old was driving. The article doesn't even say who was driving.
          acobra163
          • 3 Years Ago
          The article doesn't have to tell you that. That info is available on other sites. The 17 yr old son was driving the combo rig. He lacked the experience to operate such a vehicle safely...
      clenchersan
      • 3 Years Ago
      AP/AOL: If you put a headline out there that says what the cause of the accident is, then by god you should put the cause of the accident in the article!!! Morons. Now Mrs. Cottontail is going to have to squirt out 8 more spawn to compensate.
      • 3 Years Ago
      BELTS SAVE LIFES I PRAY FOR THEM AND THIER FAMILY
      LC Jane
      • 3 Years Ago
      Tooooooo many people (18) in one trailer. Did not know they could carry that many individuals. My prayers go out to the families and especially the children.
      BOB
      • 3 Years Ago
      I've driven a big rig like that for 35 years and countless miles and a 17 year old should never have been driving. With 18 souls on board and his lack of experiance it was an accident waiting to happen. I'm sure he was a carefull driver but experiance rules. He could have been distracted or fell asleep.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @BOB
        Where does it say who was driving, maybe I missed it. Prayers with the family regardless.
        Richard
        • 3 Years Ago
        @BOB
        Or even an unexpected cross wind upon an inexperienced, not anticipatory, driver. Sad indeed.
      MICHAEL
      • 3 Years Ago
      i dont see how you could possibly put 18 people in a motor home.
        buzzardbut
        • 3 Years Ago
        @MICHAEL
        They had two rv's, 1 built on a box van the other was in tow.
        Karen
        • 3 Years Ago
        @MICHAEL
        Not legally anyway. Seat belts go for motorhomes also. That was just totally insane doing that.
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