2013-07-11 / Front Page

Three injured in accident Sunday

Minnesota resident’s van strikes semi on U.S. 2


A minivan involved in a two-vehicle accident is shown Sunday. The van was carrying three teenagers, all of whom were injured in the crash. 
Pioneer Tribune photo A minivan involved in a two-vehicle accident is shown Sunday. The van was carrying three teenagers, all of whom were injured in the crash. Pioneer Tribune photo MANISTIQUE – Three Minnesota residents were injured when their minivan crashed into a semi just outside Manistique city limits Sunday. The driver of the semi was uninjured.

According to a press release from the Michigan State Police – St. Ignace Post, the accident occurred at approximately 12:30 p.m. on U.S. 2, west of Manistique. The minivan, driven by 18-year-old Austin Balfany, from Minneapolis, Minn., was traveling eastbound when it crossed the centerline and collided with a westbound semi truck, driven by 69-year-old David

Church from Detour Village. Upon impact, the minivan rolled several times before coming to rest in the ditch, the release states. The loaded semi truck also ran off the roadway.

Balfany was pinned in the wreckage of the overturned vehicle, and extracted by officers from the Manistique Public Safety Department. The other occupants of the vehicle, including one minor and 18-year-old Stephanie Fischbach, were also injured. All three occupants were transported by Manistique Public Safety EMS and initially treated at Schoolcraft Memorial Hospital. Balfany and Fischbach of Blaine, Minn., were transferred to Marquette General Hospital. As of Monday, Balfany was listed in serious condition. Fischbach was treated and released.

Church was the lone occupant of the semi truck and was not injured in the crash. Officers shut down U.S. 2 for a brief period during the removal of the semi truck.

Alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the crash.

Assisting on the scene were the Manistique Public Safety Fire Department and EMS, Thompson Fire Department, Schoolcraft County Sheriff’s Department, DNR and staff from the nearby Schoolcraft Memorial Hospital.

The crash remains under investigation.

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