KHP releases details of K-18 bridge death

By The Mercury

The Kansas Highway Patrol has released the identity of the man who died Friday morning following a multiple-vehicle crash on the Kansas Highway 18 bridge spanning the Kansas River.

William Bratton Jr., 37, of Junction City died after falling from the K-18 bridge at 5:45 a.m. on Friday, though authorities still aren’t certain about the circumstances surrounding the fall.

Officials say Bratton exited his 2008 Chevrolet Silverado after he lost control of the truck while driving east over the icy bridge and struck a second pickup, driven by Donald Phillips of Junction City. 

Phillips, driving a 2009 Chevrolet Silverado, was also driving east on the bridge. His vehicle continued east and came to rest on the south shoulder of the road. A third Silverado, this one a 2001 model driven by Roger Wilcoxson of Clay Center, veered right and struck the bridge rail and came to a stop.

According to a press release, Bratton “exited his vehicle for an unknown reason” then went over the bridge railing, falling 30 feet to his death.

Neither Phillips nor Wilcoxson sustained injuries as a result of the accident.

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