Noel Man Plunges Into River, Drowns
Thursday, February 21, 2013
A 32-year-old Noel man drowned early Saturday morning as the result of a one-vehicle wreck on Highway 59 in Noel.
According to Noel Marshal Paul Gardner, Kibrom Araya was southbound on Highway 59 between the two bridges that connect the town when he lost control of his vehicle on a slick stretch of road at about 5 a.m. and went into a spin. The driver fought to regain control, but ended up hitting a tree and plunging into Elk River.
Gardner said he received a report from an eye witness who told him there was a string of cars full of workers just getting off at the Tyson plant about 5 a.m. She said there was a large gap between cars and that the victim appeared to accelerate to close that gap, Gardner said.
“She said when he began to accelerate, he went into a spin with constant acceleration, went out of control, hit the tree and into the water,” Gardner said.
The marshal said there is a 350-400 foot section along the estimated 1,200 -foot space between the bridges in Noel, one on Highway 59, the other on Main Street, where there is no guardrail. It was in the section with no guardrail where the car went into the river.
The Noel Fire Department and two wrecker services responded. The marshal said it took them until about 6 a.m. to extract the vehicle from the river. He said a dive team had been placed on standby in case they were needed.
McDonald County Coroner B. J. Goodwin pronounced Araya dead at 6:47 a.m. He listed the cause of death as drowning.
Five people were hurt in separate wrecks over the weekend, according to reports from the Missouri State Highway Patrol.
Misty D. Downing, 36, Goodman, received serious injuries in a single-vehicle wreck at 12:30 a.m. Feb. 12 on Lark Road a mile north of the city, the patrol reported.
The wreck occurred as the northbound Downing traveled off the left side of the road and struck a utility pole.
According to the patrol, the driver was not buckled up.
Four people were injured in a single-vehicle wreck at 8 a.m. Feb. 15 on Quail Road four miles southwest of Stella, the patrol reported.
Amanda L. Burrowes, 27, driver of the northbound vehicle, received moderate injuries, as did passengers Robert L. Barnes, 6, and Alyssa L. Burrowes, 13. Receiving minor injuries was Kelsy L. Reed, 2. All involved are from Neosho.
According to the patrol, the wreck occurred when the vehicle went off the highway and struck a tree.
No one was buckled up except for the Reed child, according to the patrol.