Associated Press, Published May 25 2009
11 die in Minnesota traffic crashesMINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Crashes on Minnesota roadways over the weekend killed at least 11 people - including four in a minivan that was hit by a pickup truck in Olmsted County - making this the deadliest Memorial Day weekend in recent memory.
With the holiday weekend only half over, authorities said Sunday the weekend fatality rate was already much higher than in past years.
``It's disheartening,' said State Patrol spokesman Lt. Matt Langer. ``We really do believe that as a state, we can do better.'
Statistics on past Memorial Day weekends were not immediately available, but Langer said the state averages about two to three crash fatalities in a given weekend.
In Olmsted County, four people died and two were critically injured when a minivan and pickup truck collided about 11:30 p.m. Saturday at Highway 63 and Highway 30, in southeastern Minnesota.
The State Patrol said alcohol was detected on the driver of the pickup truck - and he was not injured.
There was no alcohol detected on any of the victims in the minivan.
The victims were identified as: 45-year-old Terry Milholland of Beecher, 19-year-old Hedi Newell of Rochester, 23-year-old Jarah Beers of Rochester, and Raymond Milholland, whose age and hometown were not immediately known.
Two others in the minivan were critically injured - including a 2-year-old boy.
``We definitely believe alcohol is involved,' Langer said.
Few details were available Sunday, but authorities said the crash was a ``broadside.'
Elsewhere in the state:
- Jordan Murphy, 21, of Winona, died Sunday morning when he lost control of the car he was driving on Highway 43 in Fillmore County. The vehicle ran off the road and rolled. Murphy was not wearing a seat belt.
- Paige Brown, 17, of Cass Lake, died Saturday morning when the car she was riding in ran off the road and hit several trees on Highway 169 north of Highway 210 in Aitkin County.
- The driver of one vehicle died Saturday evening when the vehicle crossed into oncoming traffic on Highway 14 in Olmsted County. The victim's identity and gender have not been released.
- Judy Hubers, 59, of Oak Grove was killed Saturday evening in a three-vehicle crash on Highway 371 at Wilson's Junction in Cass County. Hubers was on a motorcycle and was not wearing a helmet.
- A pedestrian was hit and killed on Interstate 94 at County Road 75 in Wright County Saturday night. The 25-year-old was from Otsego. The victim's name has not been released.
- Amber L. Frandup, 25, of Eagan, died Saturday night when the motorcycle she was riding on rear-ended a car on the Mendota Bridge in Dakota County.
- A 61-year-old woman from Carver was killed Sunday afternoon when two vehicles crashed in the city of Carver, in Carver County. Officials say she was not wearing her seat belt.
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