Three people were injured, with two air-lifted to hospitals, after a traffic crash that sent vehicles careening into the County Inn parking lot north of Rice Lake on Saturday night, according to the Barron County Sheriff’s Department.
Two SUVs collided at the intersection of Hwy. B and SS shortly after 6 p.m. Both cars then careened into the parking lot of the busy restaurant, crashing into a parked vehicles, one of which then crashed into the side of the building.
The official crash report indicates that a Chevy Suburban driven by Brent Burns, of Rice Lake, was eastbound on Hwy. B and failed to stop at a stop sign at the intersection with Hwy. SS. The Suburban then struck a southbound Chevy Equinox driven by Dillen Metheny, of Springbrook. The impact sent both cars into the Country Inn parking lot, where four parked vehicles were hit and a fifth was damaged by flying debris.
A passenger in the Equinox, Justin Metheny, of Springbrook, was flown to St. Mary’s Hospital in Duluth hospital with serious injuries. Dillen Metheny and Brett Burns were taken to local hospitals with non-life threatening injuries.
Four people were in one of the parked vehicles involved in the crash. All were checked at the scene and needed no further medical attention.
One person in the building received minor injuries from debris when the building was struck.
Five vehicles were towed from the scene.
Alcohol was not a factor in the crash, said Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald.
Assisting at the scene were Barron County Sheriff’s Department deputies, Rice Lake Fire Department, Bear Lake Haugen Fire Department, Lakeview Medical Center Ambulance, Chetek Ambulance, Cumberland Ambulance, Life Link and North Memorial helicopters.