Authorities on Wednesday identified the 39-year-old Wichita man killed in a head-on collision Tuesday night in Butler County as Jeremy Jachim.
In making the identification, Butler County Sheriff Kelly Herzet said a heavy thunderstorm and wind probably were contributing factors.
Jachim was driving a 2009 Honda Civic westbound in the eastbound lane of four-lane U.S. 54 just east of Southwest Indianola Road when it collided shortly before 9:30 p.m. with an eastbound Dodge van, Herzet said.
As Jachim drove in the passing lane, a witness told authorities he was unable to get Jachim’s attention to let him know he was going the wrong way, Herzet said.
“It was right about the time the rain was coming down hard and the visibility was down to nothing,” the sheriff said. “I do think it was a factor (in the accident). He must have gotten on not realizing it was a four-lane highway.”
Jachim was pronounced dead at the scene. The van driver, a 31-year-old man from Augusta, and his 16-year-old passenger from Augusta, were taken to Wesley Medical Center with injuries, Herzet said.
The 31-year-old was still in the hospital Wednesday afternoon, a Wesley spokeswoman said. The 16-year-old was not listed as a patient, she said.