A firefighter from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is being charged with criminal vehicular homicide for his role in a deadly crash that killed two of his fellow firefighters and injured several others on Interstate 35W in Blaine, Minn. The firefighters were on their way to the Box Canyon wildfire in Utah when they crashed.
The crash occurred at approximately 3 p.m. on Saturday at I-35W and 95th Avenue in Blaine. The truck carrying the firefighters left the road for an unknown reason, struck the median cable barriers and rolled.
The firefighters were part of the Beartown Firefighting Crew in Baraga, Mich., according to a statement from the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community. 23-year-old James Shelifoe, Jr. and 25-year-old Alan Swartz, both of Baraga, were killed in the crash. Seven others, including the driver of the truck, were injured, but all are expected to recover.
The driver of the truck, Michael Johnson, 28, of Baraga, was booked into the Anoka County Jail. Jail records show he is being charged with criminal vehicular homicide for operating a vehicle in a grossly negligent manner.
The cause of the crash remains unknown.