The accident happened on March 14th (2013). Investigators have determined that the driver of the SUV, 39-year-old Charles J. Rice of Sioux Falls, was driving under the influence. In fact Rice, who was pronounced dead at the accident scene, had a blood alcohol level over twice the legal limit of .08 percent. Rice’s passenger, 39-year-old Kristin Loudermilk of Sioux Falls also died in the accident.
Randy L. Gergen of Granville had been northbound on Highway 9, driving a 2007 Peterbilt semi tractor and trailer, near the entrance for Grand Falls Casino. Rice was southbound in a 2000 GMC Yukon.
Rice began turning into the Grand Falls Casino and drove in front of the semi. The semi was unable to stop and struck the Yukon. Both vehicles ended up in the east ditch.
Gergen did not report any injuries.
Some people in the area have blamed the road layout for the accident.