MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Two people were killed and two others were seriously injured Tuesday when dump truck collided with an ambulance in northern Minnesota — at the same spot a Minnesota Department of Natural Resources officer died less than three week earlier.
The Minnesota State Patrol says the T-bone crash happened around 10:20 a.m. in Lawrence Township, about 30 miles west of Hibbing.
Investigators say the dump truck was traveling east on County Road 57 and slammed into the side of the ambulance at the intersection with County Road 336.
The driver of the ambulance, 28-year-old Kimberly Fay Hake of Cohasset, suffered life-threatening injuries. She was brought to Grand Itasca Hospital for treatment.
Two passengers in the ambulance were killed. They were identified as 51-year-old Troy Edward Boettcher, of Warba, and 17-year-old Joseph Michael Latimer, of Grand Rapids. Both died at the scene.
The driver the dump truck, 67-year-old Jeffery Elvin Ekholm of Nashwauk, also suffered life-threatening injuries. He was brought to St. Luke’s Hospital for treatment.
Alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the crash.
In a statement Wednesday, Rep. Spencer Igo, R-Grand Rapids, called the crash tragic.
“The thoughts and prayers of the entire Northland go out to the friends and family of those involved,” he said.
Igo noted that the crash happened at the same spot where a crash killed DNR conservation officer Sarah Grell on May 24.
“It’s clear that safety at this intersection must be improved and I am committed to working with MnDOT and local officials to make sure that significant changes are made in the near future to prevent further accidents at this location,” he said.
The State Fire Marshal identified Boettcher as a paramedic. A funeral for him is scheduled for Monday in Grand Rapids.