Indiana Conservation Officers are investigating a snowmobile accident which occurred Thursday at approximately 6:30 p.m. Keith Hochstetler, 31, of Milford, sustained serious internal injuries as a result of the accident.
Hochstetler was operating his snowmobile along with some friends in the area of CRs 600 North and 150 West on private property in Leesburg. Investigating officer Nathan Hooley determined that Hochstetler struck a snowbank and was ejected from the snowmobile while traveling approximately 50 mph.
Hochstetler was picked up by a passing motorist who witnessed the accident. The unidentified motorist drove Hochstetler to his residence. Hochstetler was later driven to Kosciusko Community Hospital by a relative. His injuries were then determined to be severe enough to require him be flown to Lutheran Hospital in Fort Wayne where he was treated for internal injuries. Hochstetler was listed in stable condition and was still hospitalized as of today.
Indiana Conservation Officers encourage snowmobile operators to wear protective gear and helmets when operating or as a passenger on a snowmobile. Always remember to operate your snowmobile responsibly. Some additional safety tips are; never ride alone, never operate under the influence of drugs or alcohol, carry a fully charged cell phone with you, and to operate within your skill level.
The accident report will be forwarded to the Kosciusko County Prosecutors Office for review.