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Propane tanker truck crash closes Highway 71 in northern Minn.

A tanker truck from Lakes Gas Co. is connected to a tow truck after a wreck closed U.S. Highway 71 Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017, near Tenstrike, Minn. Jillian Gandsey / Forum News Service

TENSTRIKE, Minn.—Two people were injured Tuesday, Dec. 19, and a highway closed after a crash involving a propane delivery truck north of Bemidji.

A Minnesota State Patrol report said that the crash was reported at 8:19 a.m. when the driver of a Jeep Cherokee, identified as Kjrsten Okland, 27, of Bemidji, lost control of her vehicle while traveling south on U.S. Highway 71. The driver of the propane truck—Steven Wiegman, 58, of Bemidji—was traveling north on the highway and tried to avoid the Cherokee. The two vehicles collided, causing both drivers to sustain non life-threatening injuries.

The crash was a half mile south of Tenstrike, according to a post on the Beltrami County Sheriff's Office Facebook Tuesday morning. Tenstrike is about 17 miles north of Bemidji.

Officials closed a stretch of the highway as emergency crews worked to clear the wreckage, warning residents that the driving lanes were very slick. Numerous deputies, troopers, emergency responders and heavy wreck crews are on the scene.

At about 12:45 p.m., a tow truck removed a Lakes Gas truck with severe damage to the front end from the scene and the road was reopened shortly thereafter. Lakes Gas Co. is a propane supplier with multiple Minnesota and Wisconsin locations, including one in Bemidji.

Sgt. Jesse Grabow with the Minnesota State Patrol said via email that no propane leaked from the truck.

Forum News Service

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