Numerous snowmobile crashes in Cass County last weekend

A string of snowmobile crashes in Cass County over the Presidents’ Day weekend resulted in a series of injuries, one of which was serious.

According to Sheriff Tom Burch, speed was the main factor that caused the machines to leave the trails and crash.

The first crash on Feb. 17 was on the Paul Bunyan Trail in Powers Township, in rural Backus.

A 68-year-old Sauk Rapids man was transported to a Brainerd Hospital. The Arctic Cat snowmobile rolled over and left the trail, causing injury.

The next day, a 33-year-old St. James man was riding a snowmobile on the Old Grade Trail in rural Pine River when it left the trail and caused injury. This patient was also transported to a Brainerd hospital.

On Saturday, two crashes were reported, the first on the Bull Moose Trail.

This crash resulted in serious injury after the 54-year-old Zumbrota woman left the trail, entered a deep ravine and crashed into a large tree. She was transported to a St. Cloud hospital.

Another crash Saturday was in rural Brainerd in Fairview Township. The 43-year-old Elk River man was operating a 2012 Polaris when it left the roadway and caused an injury.

Burch encourages snowmobile operators to know and understand their machines and to not exceed speed for the conditions or terrain encountered.

The Nisswa 100 snowmobile race is this weekend, Feb. 26-27, and the Frozen Four event will be on Gull Lake.

Significant snowmobile traffic will be present for both events.

Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers all the beats in north-central Minnesota, such as local government, crime, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University. You can follow along with Larissa's live tweets of meetings and events on Twitter!

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