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Australian photographer, storm-chaser killed in car accident southwest of Wichita

A world-renowned landscape photographer was killed in a car accident Thursday morning southwest of Sedgwick County.

Dale Sharpe, an Australian photographer known for landscape and storm photography, was struck by another vehicle on K-2, northeast of Harper, according to a Kansas Highway Patrol crash report.

At 12:32 a.m. Sharpe was driving north on K-2 when he struck a deer, disabling his vehicle, which sat in the south-bound lane.

Sharpe was standing outside his vehicle in a ditch west of the south-bound lane at mile marker K42, when an oncoming vehicle attempted to avoid Sharpe’s abandoned vehicle by driving off the road into the same ditch, hitting Sharpe, according to the report.

Sharpe was treated on the scene and at Harper County Community Hospital, where he passed away.

The oncoming driver, 45-year-old Ronald Pinkston, was not harmed.

Highway Patrol spokesman Chad Crittenden said Pinkston was driving in accordance to the law and will not be charged.

Pinkston was driving south when he saw Sharpe’s vehicle, which he perceived at the time to be an oncoming vehicle. He did not hit Sharpe’s vehicle, Crittenden said.

“It appears he was in his lane, tried to make an avoidance to get out of the way for a potentially on-coming vehicle,” Crittenden said.

Sharpe was 36 years old. He is survived by his wife, Karlie Russell, who was his partner in their business DK Photography.

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