On 10/24/16 at approximatley 6:55 A.M. the Palo Alto County Sheriff’s Office received a call of a 2 vehicle head on collison that happened in the 3400 Block of 420th Avenue. Upon an investigation it was determined that Conner Allen Tonderum of Graettinger was driving a 2009 Chevy Silverado south in the 3400 block of 420th Avenue. As Tonderum was driving south, his cell phone slid off the center counsel and he looked down to find the phone. As Tonderum was looking for his cell phone, his vehicle drifted into the northbound traffic lane where his vehicle subsequently collided with a 2009 Toyota Avalon that was being driven north by Thomas Garry Steen.
Following the collsion, the Steen vehicle entered the east ditch and the Tonderum vehicle entered the east ditch and continued east into a field. Both vehicles remained upright during the collison and were deemed total losses.
Tonderum was checked out at the scene by ambulance personnel and then was released. Steen had to be extricated by the Emmetsburg Fire Department and was transported to the Palo Alto County Hospital to be treated for injuries sustained.
Tonderum was issued a citation for driving on the wrong side of a 2-way highway. The Palo Alto County Sheriff’s Office was assisted at the scene by the Emmetsburg Fire Department and the Palo Alto County Ambulance Service.
A criminal charge is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.