A man attempting to use the shoulder of the road in order to merge onto I-96 east of Nunica caused a three-vehicle crash and sent two people to the hospital Thursday afternoon, police said.
Witnesses told the Grand Haven Tribune, a 2008 Cadillac was traveling at a high rate of speed and attempted to use the shoulder to pass a 1994 Ford van on eastbound I-96 shortly before 1 p.m. The Cadillac clipped the back end of the van, causing the driver to lose control of the van.
The van then struck a third vehicle, causing both of them to roll into the highway’s median near the 14-mile marker in Polkton Township, said Sgt. Dennis Luce of the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department.
The driver of the Cadillac, 57-year-old Craig Tober of Nunica, was not injured in the crash, Luce said.
The driver of the van, 31-year-old Jose Espinoza of Coopersville, received minor injuries and was treated and released at the scene, along with two of his passengers.
However, a fourth occupant of the van, David Vasquez of Grand Rapids, suffered neck and back injuries. He was transported by ambulance to Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids in stable condition, Luce said.
The driver of the third vehicle, 67-year-old Sandra Enders of Norton Shores, also suffered neck and back injuries and was transported to Butterworth Hospital in stable condition.
Police shut down eastbound I-96 for more than an hour after the crash.
Luce said the crash remains under investigation by the Sheriff’s Department.