Franklin County Coroner's 'body wagon' destroyed in collision

Franklin County Coroner Dan Blasdel's body wagon was pronounced DOA last week following a T-bone accident.

Blasdel told county commissioners Wednesday he needs another vehicle because his well-worn, second-hand 1998 Chevy S-10 pickup suffered a bent frame in the crash.

It would cost more to repair it than it is worth, Blasdel said.

The truck, acquired from another county department several years ago, needed a tow tag to go to the boneyard.

Blasdel said he was not at fault while traveling eastbound on Sylvester Street in Pasco with a green light when a woman heading westbound turned onto 14th Avenue in front of him.

"I T-boned her van at 25 mph," Blasdel said, adding the police cited the other driver and not him.

There were no serious injuries, he said.

Bladsel said he has been using his private vehicle during coroner's calls. He would like his truck replaced with an all-wheel-drive or four-wheel drive rig.

The county shop has no spare vehicles for him to use, Blasdel said.

The coroner said he reported the incident the following day, July 19, but the police report was not available for several days.

Commissioners directed the coroner to work with county administrator Fred Bowen to get a suitable replacement vehicle. The DOA pickup is likely to be scrapped and dismantled to serve as a donor of vital parts for other ailing vehicles.