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Forum staff reports, Published February 07 2009

Rothsay man dies in car-truck crash

WAHPETON, N.D. – The North Dakota Highway Patrol has identified a Rothsay, Minn., man who was killed Thursday night when the car he was a passenger in ran a stop sign and broadsided a sugar beet truck.

Michael Oien, 53, was partially ejected from the car and died at the scene, the patrol said in a news release.

The accident happened at 9:08 p.m. at Highway 210 and Fourth Street North in Wahpeton.

An eyewitness told the patrol that the northbound 1999 Ford car failed to stop and struck the driver’s side of a Minn-Dak sugar beet truck traveling westbound on Highway 210.

The car’s driver, Steven Ackert, 56, of Rothsay, was injured and taken by ambulance to St. Francis Medical Center in Breckenridge, Minn., and then airlifted to MeritCare Hospital in Fargo. He was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, the patrol said.

Ackert’s family requested that no information be released about his condition, a MeritCare spokeswoman said Friday.

The truck driver, Marilyn Von Ahlefeldt, 53, of Wahpeton, wasn’t injured.

The sugar beet truck lost part of its load, and several wreckers and snowplows were used to clear the road, the patrol said.

See Obituaries, Page A10.