Pickup Hits Amish Horse-Drawn Carriage, Killing 2 Kids

ALGANSEE TOWNSHIP, Michigan—Authorities say a pickup truck rear-ended an Amish horse-drawn carriage in southern Michigan, killing two children and seriously injuring two others and a woman who were in the carriage.

The state police say the two adults and five children who were in the carriage were ejected when the truck hit it Friday night in Algansee Township, a small farming community not far from Michigan’s borders with Indiana and Ohio.

The children who were killed were 6 and 2 years old. They were pronounced dead at the scene.

Road accident Michigan
A damaged truck sits on the side of the road after an accident involving a horse-drawn carriage in California Township, Mich., on June 7, 2019. (Don Reid/The Daily Reporter via AP)

Authorities say two other children, ages 3 and 4, were hospitalized with life-threatening injuries and that a woman also suffered serious injuries.

Sgt. Todd Price told ABC News that the pickup truck’s driver was intoxicated at the time of the crash and is being held in Branch County Jail. Authorities haven’t released the names of anyone involved.

Drunk Driving

Almost 30 people in the United States die in drunk-driving crashes every day, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Alcohol severely affects drivers, the administration noted. “Alcohol is a substance that reduces the function of the brain, impairing thinking, reasoning, and muscle coordination. All these abilities are essential to operating a vehicle safely,” it stated.

“Driving after drinking is deadly. Yet it still continues to happen across the United States. If you drive while impaired, you could get arrested, or worse—be involved in a traffic crash that causes serious injury or death,” the administration added.

People who plan to drink should designate a sober driver ahead of time or call a taxi, ride-sharing service, or friend.

‘Pray for This County’

A Mississippi sheriff is asking for prayers for his community after two wrecks claimed 11 lives in his mostly rural county this week.

Three people were killed and several were injured on Wednesday, June 5, in a wreck involving multiple vehicles, including a school bus with no children aboard, on a highway not far from the scene of another crash that killed eight people two days earlier.

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A Mississippi Highway Patrol state trooper investigates a wreck on U.S. Highway 45 south of Scooba in Kemper County, Miss., on June 5, 2019. (Bill Graham/The Meridian Star via AP)

Kemper County Sheriff James Moore described the scene of the wreck as “chaos.” It happened Wednesday afternoon on U.S. Highway 45 south of Scooba.

“I’m asking you to please pray for this county and all of those affected in our county for the last few days,” Moore told WTOK-TV. “That’s a lot of fatalities, and we are asking for everyone to pray for the families that are involved.”

A Mississippi Highway Patrol spokesman, Sgt. Andy West, said a southbound vehicle crossed the highway median and hit three northbound vehicles. A photo from the Macon Beacon newspaper, provided to The Associated Press, showed a white pickup truck with the front crushed and the top ripped back. A photo from the Meridian Star showed two other vehicles that were crushed in the front.

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In this photo provided by The Macon Beacon, authorities remove one of several vehicles involved in a fatal crash near Scooba, Miss., on June 5, 2019. (Jeanette Unruh/The Macon Beacon via AP)
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In this photo provided by The Macon Beacon, authorities remove one of several vehicles involved in a fatal crash near Scooba, Miss., on June 5, 2019. (Jeanette Unruh/The Macon Beacon via AP)

Moore said the bus came from the city of Meridian, which is south of the wreck site.

Scooba, with a population of about 695, is near the Alabama state line.

A wreck before dawn Monday killed eight people on Mississippi Highway 16 east of Scooba. That one involved a box truck and a passenger van.

The National Transportation Safety Board said Wednesday that it’s sending an investigator to look into technology on the 2020 International Harvester Corp. Box Truck and any potential contributing factors.

Weather isn’t believed to have contributed to the Monday wreck.

West said the eight men killed Monday were Guillermo Lugo, Francisco Lugo, David Lugo, Luis Lugo, Macario Peregrino, Jose Maldonedo, Arnulfo Martinez and Jose Barrera. The Lugos were brothers. All the victims lived in Macon, Mississippi.

Both drivers survived the Monday wreck. The van driver was Alejandro Resendiz, also of Macon. The truck driver was Steven McKinney of Good Hope, Alabama.