An Audrain County Sheriff’s Deputy, who is also a former Interim Vandalia Police Chief, had his patrol car rear ended just in front of Van-Far Jr./Sr. High School last Thursday evening.
According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP) Crash Report, both drivers had minor injuries in a two vehicle accident at approximately 4:57 p.m. on Highway 54. Holly J. Willoughby, 50, of Vandalia, was driving eastbound in a 2013 Ford Focus when she struck the rear of a 2018 Ford Explorer driven by Justin Landis, 43, of Mexico, Mo., while he was stopped in the roadway and waiting to make a left turn. Both drivers were reportedly wearing seat belts at the time of the accident.
Audrain County Sheriff Matt Oller said the impact was so hard that Landis’ driver’s seat and head rest were broken and the patrol vehicle was no longer drivable.
Both Willoughby and Landis were transported to SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital-Audrain; Willoughby by a private vehicle and Landis by Van-Far Ambulance.
Landis was treated for neck and back pain and later released.
The vehicle driven by Willoughby had extensive damage and was towed by Scott’s. Landis’ vehicle was moderately damaged and was towed by Heartland Towing.
“Given the circumstances, we’re thankful that all we need to deal with at this point is bent up cars,” Sheriff Oller said in a post on Facebook.