A 45-year-old Ottawa man is in fair condition today after being rescued from a burning car Wednesday morning in a single-vehicle accident on U.S. Highway 56, about one mile from the southwestern edge of Douglas County.
Lowell Manis was driving a 1997 Chevrolet Cavalier west on U.S. 56 about 6:15 a.m. when he fell asleep and the car left the road about one mile east of the Osage County line, said Lt. Steve Lewis, a Douglas County Sheriff's Office spokesman.
The car went into the northern ditch, struck a culvert, became airborne, struck a farmer's gate, then rolled over onto its top, Lewis said. The car then caught fire, attracting the attention of several motorists who stopped to help, broke out the driver's window and pulled Manis out.
Manis was transported to Stormont-Vail Hospital in Topeka in critical condition. Since then, his condition has improved to "fair," according to hospital officials.