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Dave Olson, Published December 01 2010

Moorhead police chief, wife recovering from I-29 crash

Moorhead Police Chief David Ebinger and his wife, Lynne, were driving to Arkansas the weekend before Thanksgiving to visit relatives when their four-wheel-drive pickup hit a patch of icy fog as they turned off Interstate 29 for a rest area.

Ebinger said he was driving about 60 mph, well below the speed limit, when the pickup started spinning.

When the truck hit the median, it rolled three times.

Lynne Ebinger suffered several broken bones, including one in her pinky finger.

David Ebinger said he walked away from the crash with sore ribs and “Brett Favre-quality bruises.”

The crash happened just after the couple crossed from North Dakota to South Dakota in a low area the local sheriff later told them was prone to fog.

Ebinger said the sheriff also said their rollover was the first of four reported that day.

Admitting to some embarrassment over the incident, Ebinger said he didn’t mind talking about it because it might serve as a warning to others to be on their guard this winter.

“You can drive safely – which I was doing. You can be aware of other drivers, and things like this can still happen,” Ebinger said, adding that he’s thankful he and his wife were buckled in.

“We would be dead if we were not wearing our seat belts,” he said.

Ebinger said his wife was taken to a hospital in Sisseton, S.D.

Clay County Sheriff Bill Bergquist and Cass County Sheriff Paul Laney both drove to South Dakota when they heard about the crash. Ebinger said both men showed up at the Sisseton hospital to offer assistance in getting his wife back to Fargo, where she was hospitalized.

Since then, the family has been showered with food and well-wishes, Ebinger said.

“It feels good to be in a community like this,” he said.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Dave Olson at (701) 241-5555