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Iowa couple dies in Hwy. 81 crash

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CROFTON — Two people were killed in a crash in northern Cedar County last Tuesday afternoon.

The Cedar County Sheriff's Office was called to the scene at the intersection of Highway 12 and Highway 81, four miles east of Crofton just after noon, Tuesday.

Authorities said a Ford F-550 driven by Neil Collins, 90, of Orleans, was southbound on U.S. 81 when it was hit by a Chevy Malibu headed east on Highway 12.

The driver of the Malibu, William Koontz, 74, and his passenger, Anita Koontz, 71, both of Sioux City, Iowa, died in the crash, the sheriff's office said.

Neither was wearing a seat belt.

Collins, who was wearing a seat belt, was treated for minor injuries at Avera Sacred Heart Hospital.

Statewide statistics show their were 26 fatalities on Nebraska roads in January. No statistics for February have been released yet, however.

There were 220 fatalities on Nebraska roads in 2021, a five percent reduction from the total of 233 in 2020. Last year marks the second consecutive yearly reduction in traffic fatalities across the state.