County road grader falls into ditch; operator escapes injury

Updated: Apr 1

MOUND CITY – The lucky operator of a county road grader walked away uninjured from an accident that could have been serious on Friday.


The grader belonging to the Linn County road department slipped off the side of a culvert and fell sideways into a ditch in the Centerville area on 1125 Road about a quarter mile west of the intersection with Andrews Road. The grader remained in the ditch on Monday after initial efforts to free it with county equipment were unsuccessful on Friday.


On Monday, Linn County Public Works Administrator Shaun West told county commissioners that he had contacted a company with equipment that could recover the grader for a flat cost. He also said he had been in contact with K-Camp, the county’s insurance underwriter, about covering the cost of the recovery.


Complicating the recovery efforts are the muddy roadway. West said that road district foreman Harry Wisdom planned to have equipment on site to lower the grade of the roadway to make the recovery easier.


West said that, because the road is a dead end, once the grader operator Levi Whisenhunt cleared the road of snow, he was backing up to return to the Andrews Road intersection without causing damage to the property at the end of the road.


The grader got too close to the edge of the road over a culvert that did not extend very far beyond the roadway. The dirt and gravel collapsed, sending the grader into the ditch on its side.


According to the Linn County Sheriff's Office accident report, Whisenhunt was wearing his safety equipment when the accident occurred.

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