Head-on sends 2 to hospital

Posted: Tuesday, February 05, 2008

A father and daughter were taken to Central Peninsula Hospital after being involved in a head-on collision on the Kenai Spur Highway on Sunday.

Christopher Bender, 37, of Kenai, was traveling toward Soldotna at 6:30 p.m. in a blue Jeep Cherokee when he lost control of his vehicle at Mile 3.2, moved into oncoming traffic and struck a silver four-door Buick driven by Spencer Han, 47, of Kenai. Han's daughter, Alice Han, was a passenger.

Central Emergency Services Fire Marshal Gary Hale said the impact of Bender's car caused the dashboard to cave in on top of Spencer Han. Rescue workers had to extricate him from the vehicle using a hydraulic ram.

Rescue workers were able to offer Alice Han medical treatment and take her to the hospital without extricating her, Hale said. The driver's side of the Hans' vehicle sustained most of the impact from the collision.

"(Han) was conscious during the entire extrication," Hale said, adding that the dashboard was sitting in his lap. "It required rescue crews to remove part of the roof and both doors on the driver's side in order to extricate him safely out. The gentleman sustained injuries on the left side (of his body) from the impact."

Hale said Bender initially complained of tightness in the chest after his airbags deployed, but refused treatment and transportation to the hospital. The Kenai Fire Department offered mutual aid and took Alice Han to CPH.

Camille Sorensen, marketing coordinator at CPH, said Han was admitted and currently listed in fair condition. Alice Han was treated and released.

Jessica Cejnar can be reached at jessica.cejnar@peninsulaclarion.com.

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