MARSHALL - The wife of a Tracy man severely injured in a motorcycle crash Friday night in Murray County said Tuesday he is in stable condition at Sanford Medical Center in Sioux Falls, S.D.
Paul Sanders, 46, suffered a concussion, five broken ribs, a collapsed lung, broken clavicle and fractured scapula after the motorcycle he was driving left the road Friday. The Murray County Sheriff's Office received a 911 call from a passer-by at 6:10 p.m. Friday, Sheriff Steve Telkamp said, after Sanders' motorcycle left Murray County Road 38, north of Currie.
"It looks like he just went off the roadway, like he just missed the curve," Telkamp said. "He got tossed around pretty good. It sounds like he's doing a little better (Tuesday)."
Sanders was first taken to Sanford Tracy Medical Center and was then airlifted to Sanford in Sioux Falls on Friday night. Upon arrival there, his condition was critical. But on Tuesday, Sanders' wife, Hillary, said his condition had improved greatly, although his spleen is functioning at only 30 percent capacity.
"Saturday was touch on and go," Hillary Sanders said in a text message Tuesday. "But then Sunday morning he was back with us and got the ventilator out. It's a long road ahead of him, but he will get there. We have the biggest and best support system you could ask for."
The injuries Sanders sustained were strictly to his left side, Hillary Sanders said, and most are internal - "he doesn't look like someone in a motorcycle accident usually does."
Hillary Sanders said her husband "got his humor back," but his breathing is still shallow because of the damage to his lungs and that the family should expect a lengthy hospital stay and rehab. She said he doesn't remember anything about the crash, but that the family isn't asking him much about it.
"We just want him to heal and keep his blood pressure down," Hillary Sanders said.
The Sheriff's Office was assisted at the scene by Lake Shetek First Responders and Tracy Ambulance.
While Sanders survived his crash, 2013 has been a deadly year for motorcyclists in Minnesota. According to the Minnesota Office of Traffic Safety, a division of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, more motorcyclists have died this year on Minnesota roads compared to this time last year. There have been 28 motorcycle fatalities already in Minnesota this year, including seven in the first 13 days of this month. Ten riders were killed in June.
There were 18 motorcycle deaths in Minnesota at this time last year, the OTS said.
The 55 deaths in all of 2012 were the most in a year since 2008.