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None injured in spate of snow-related crashes

Rumors of a multi-car pileup could not be confirmed, but state and county personnel provided details of at least three or four crashes all on Dec. 28.

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Vehicles approach the U.S. Hwy. 71 roundabout Dec. 29, 2021 in Park Rapids after a three-day weather event blanketed the city under more than a foot of snow. Robin Fish / Park Rapids Enterprise
  • An unusual number of vehicle accidents occurred Tuesday during a heavy snowfall in Hubbard County. Luckily, no injuries were reported.

    Enterprise staff’s ears perked up at police scanner traffic describing a three-vehicle accident near Laporte, then a two-car accident on U.S. Hwy. 71, and incidents mentioning Lake George, Kabekona Corner – all with no injuries.

    Asked for details, Sgt. Troy Christianson with the Minnesota State Patrol said information was limited due to the call load.

    However, Christianson and Sgt. Jesse Grabow were able to provide the following information:

    • About noon, near milepost 44 on State Hwy. 64, a box truck driven by Mohamed Farah, 33, of Minnetonka went off the highway, blocking the southbound lanes. Three other vehicles then went off the road to avoid the hazard, including two semis and a pickup truck. No injuries were reported.

    • About 1 p.m. near milepost 109 on State Hwy. 200, a westbound Chevrolet Colorado driven by Jonikka Kleeb, 52, of Lengby was hit from behind by a Ford Ranger driven by Luke Moss, 41, of Laporte. The Ranger then side-swiped an eastbound Chevrolet Suburban driven by James Holen, 70, of Laporte. All occupants were wearing seat belts and there were no injuries.

    • A two-vehicle crash happened shortly afterward in the same area, also with no injuries.

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A backyard play set at the corner of 4th Street and Stevens Ave. shows on Dec. 29, 2021 how deeply the snow piled up during the week surrounding Christmas. Robin Fish / Park Rapids Enterprise

Hubbard County Sheriff’s Office personnel responded to a request for dispatch information regarding Tuesday’s crashes. They were able to provide a few additional details:

  • In a two-vehicle crash at 12:42 p.m. at the intersection of U.S. Hwy. 71 and County Road 9, one vehicle ended up in the ditch.

  • In a two-vehicle accident at 12:52 p.m. near Spike’s on U.S. Hwy. 71, a vehicle that rear-ended another vehicle ended up in the ditch.

This apparent outbreak of vehicle collisions could be related to slippery road conditions during the snowy weather earlier this week.
According to the National Weather Service in Grand Forks, the Park Rapids area received 3 inches of snow on Sunday, 6.5 inches on Monday and 3.2 inches on Tuesday for a 72-hour total of 12.7 inches.

Three-day snow totals throughout the Hubbard County area ranged from 11 to 15 inches, the NWS reported.

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Despite a berm of snow plowed into the middle of Main Avenue, visitors to downtown Park Rapids on Dec. 29, 2021 continue using the center parking spaces going in both directions. Robin Fish / Park Rapids Enterprise

Related Topics: ACCIDENTS
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