Mercedes Kohlhardt Eau Claire, Wisconsin woman killed by runaway tractor after it rolled down hill at an Iowa state park. Sun Prairie local was sitting at beach near Clear Lake State Park.
Mercedes Kohlhardt, 21, had been sitting at the beach near Clear Lake State Park in Iowa on Tuesday when was hit by the state-owned tractor. The victim’s boyfriend who had gone to the beach with her was not injured.
According to a press release from the Cerro Gordo County Sheriff’s Office, the state owned tractor had rolled down the hill when it hit Kohlhardt.
Kohlhardt, from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, died at the scenes from her injuries.
The Department of Natural Resources, Clear Lake Fire and Rescue and Mercy Air Med all assisted at the scene. Authorities are investigating the incident.
‘We have no idea why that tractor went loose,’
A regard of Kohlhardt Linkdln profile revealed her graduating from the Sun Prairie High School in 2017, and attending the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire she attained a bachelor of science. She had most recently been working at a Barnes & Noble outlet.
Cerro Gordo County Sheriff Kevin Pals described the ‘small utility tractor’ as being used normally to clear brush, the Des Moines Register reports.
At the time the tractor began rolling, its brakes had been on, the sheriff added.
‘We have no idea why that tractor went loose,’ Pals said.
He continued: ‘There’s nobody that wants to see somebody involved in circumstances like this. It’s just terrible.’
It remained unclear which agency remained culpable and whether the victim’s family had recourse.
Kolhardt was remembered as being a ‘lively, funny, and creative force’ by the Sun Prairie Media Center, who donated a painting that she had done for the center back in 2017.