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Bloomfield man cited after two accidents Friday



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THE CHEVROLET BLAZER that drove off Highway H Friday night is gone, but you can still see where it came to a halt in the weedy wetlands near the road.

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September 25, 2012 | 03:39 PM
BLOOMFIELD — Two traffic accidents occurred within nine minutes of each other Friday night on Highway H, near White Pigeon Road.

On the phone Monday, Bloomfield police officer Craig Rasmussen said the first one, a single-vehicle rollover, may have been caused by a vehicular malfunction.

But according to Rasmussen, the second accident might have been avoided with more cautious driving near the site of the first accident. Jerry Schlaiss, 29, N1238 Birch Drive, was cited for driving too fast for conditions.

Rasmussen said it was raining that night, and it is especially important during inclement weather to be driving cautiously around an accident site because emergency personnel are out of their vehicles, investigating the crash, helping victims and performing other necessary tasks.

"It's important to drive cautiously so they don't get hit," Rasmussen said. "That happens a lot, unfortunately, throughout the state."

No one involved in either of Friday night's accidents along Highway H reported any injuries.

Accident details

Perhaps it was a broken tie rod which caused the single-vehicle rollover Friday at 7:11 p.m.

According to police, Michael James, 20, W1029 Violet Road, was driving a 2002 Chevrolet Blazer north on Highway H when he attempted to negotiate the curve.

James wasn't able to turn the steering wheel and the Blazer landed in the marsh.

The Blazer was rendered inoperable from the crash.

James was the sole occupant in the vehicle.

At about 7:20 p.m., the 2003 Chevrolet Impala being driven by Schlaiss struck a 2002 Chevrolet Suburban being operated by Brian Borst, 45, N1491 Highway H, Bloomfield, near the site of the James accident.

According to police, Schlaiss was headed north on Highway H, driving too fast on wet pavement as he approached the site of the accident.

Borst was driving south on Highway H. Police had the southbound lane of the highway blocked off because of the James accident. Borst drove past the accident site and had merged into the southbound lane when the Impala sideswiped the Suburban.

Both vehicles sustained moderate damage.

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