The accident was reported by 911 call at 9:20 a.m., 3.5 miles east of Newell. County deputies, Newell Police and Newell firefighters responded. It was determined that Ohrtman had been alone in the westbound car, and preliminary investigation indicates the car crossed the center line into the path of the eastbound semi. The force of the collision drove the vehicles into opposite ditches. Investigation into the cause of the accident is continuing. Sheriff's officials said Ohrtman had been returning home after working all night at a Fort Dodge hospital.
During the work to free the victim from his car, heat became overwhelming, and several firefighters needing treatment for heat exhaustion. One Newell firefighter was transported by ambulance to BVRMC for heat exhaustion.
Also assisting at the scene were the Fonda Fire Department, Iowa State Patrol, Iowa D.O.T, Pocahontas County Sheriff's Office, Newell Ambulance, BVRMC paramedics, Fonda Ambulance and the BV County Medical Examiners office.
Ohrtman was an outstanding student, athlete and artist at Newell-Fonda High School. He graduated from Iowa Central Community College in the nursing program and was employed in Fort Dodge. Funeral services will be held Saturday at 10:30 a.m. at Bethel Baptist Church in Newell. Visitation will be Friday 2-7 p.m. at Bethel Baptist.