The Hospers Fire Department and Sioux County Sheriff’s office were paged to a vehicle fire in the east ditch of Highway 60, one mile south of Hospers at approximately 2:37 AM Sunday morning. Upon arrival, deputies discovered that 29-year-old Austin Simmelink, of Ruthven was driving a 1988 GMC pickup northbound on Highway 60 when he allegedly swerved to miss a deer, lost control of the vehicle and entered the east ditch. While attempting to get back to the roadway, the truck overheated and started on fire.
No injuries were reported.
The truck sustained approximately $3,000 in damages and is considered a total loss. During the investigation, Simmelink was arrested for 2nd offense operating while intoxicated, an aggravated misdemeanor and failure to maintain control, a simple misdemeanor.