One vehicle crash in Rush Township
LARRY NEFF/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
Schuylkill County emergency personnel spent much of Sunday morning searching for a Nesquehoning man who was involved in an early morning crash along SR54 in Rush Township, Schuylkill County. Rush Township police officer Scott Cramer reported John Koehler, of 126 Stock St., Nesquehoning, is facing charges following the crash. He said Koehler was operating a late model Jeep eastbound when, for some unknown reason, he lost control of the vehicle. The SUV crossed the roadway entering the north berm traveling 400 feet striking and snapping off a PPL utility pole before coming to rest in a wooded area. Cramer believed the crash occurred between 2 and 4 a.m. The crash was reported just after 7 a.m. by a passing motorist who noticed the broken utility pole and the wreckage off the berm. Members of the Hometown and Quakake fire companies searched the area for Koehler for hours fearing he had walked away from the wreckage injured or disoriented. As police searched Koehler's vehicle they heard his cell phone ring numerous times but had a difficult time locating it as it slid into a narrow opening in his center console. After Cramer retrieved the phone with the help of Hometown fire chief Barry Messerschmidt he called several of the callers that were recent incoming calls. Just before noon Cramer finally managed to contact Koehler by phone but could not interview him because the victim told the officer he was on his way to receive medical attention for his injuries at the Lehigh Valley Hospital, Salisbury Township. Cramer said he found materials in the vehicle that showed that Koehler was an elementary teacher in the Jim Thorpe School District. The officer said Koehler is facing numerous charges. Tamaqua and Hometown fire police maintained traffic control at the scene.