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State police release more details on fatal northwest Berks crash

State police have released additional details on a fatal Penn Township crash in which an injured passenger crawled out of the wreckage in the woods to seek help.

According to emergency reports, the driver was dead in his pickup truck more than 11 hours after the Friday night crash after the passenger managed to flag down a passing driver.

Zachary T. Korch, 41, of Ontelaunee Township, was pronounced dead at 12:07 p.m. Saturday by Berks County Deputy Coroner Caleb Torres, according to acting Coroner Jonn M. Hollenbach.

Korch was found in the vehicle about 50 feet off Plum Creek Road down an embankment, according to emergency reports.

The crash occurred about 11:30 p.m. Friday, Hollenbach said.

Authorities knew about the crash because a passenger got out of the wreckage about 10:15 a.m. Saturday and flagged down a passing driver, who called 9-1-1.

State police said passenger Tamalasue C. Lenhart, 28, Kutztown, was taken to Reading Hospital with an unknown extent of injuries.

Hollenbach said that Korch appeared to have died in the crash or a short time after.

Korch died of head injuries, and the death was ruled an accident, Hollenbach said. Korch was the 28th death due to crashes on Berks roads in 2021.

State police said Korch’s vehicle was headed north when it left the roadway, went down an embankment and struck two trees before flipping over.

Crews found the vehicle about 50 feet down an embankment and soon began the process of cutting open the vehicle to get to Korch.

A short time later, the coroner’s office was called to the scene.

Source: Berkshire mont

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