Montana woman dies in crash that blocked U.S. 93

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Montana Highway Patrol Trooper John Underwood and Whitefish Fire Department Capt. Travis Tveidt examine the scene of a two-vehicle fatal accident on U.S. 93 northwest of Whitefish on Wednesday afternoon. (Brenda Ahearn/Daily Inter Lake)

A 23-year-old Montana woman was killed and two Canadians were injured in a head-on collision Wednesday near the intersection of U.S. 93 and Farm to Market Road northwest of Whitefish.†

The crash blocked the busy highway completely for two hours; alternating traffic was limited to the southbound lane for the rest of the afternoon.†

The two-vehicle accident happened at noon and left one vehicle upside-down in a ditch near the roadway.

Montana Highway Patrol Trooper John Underwood, who was still at the scene at 4:30 p.m., gave this description of the crash:†

A black Mazda 6 from Alberta, Canada, was driving southbound on U.S. 93 at mile marker 138, which is about one mile south of the intersection with Farm to Market Road.†

The Mazda driver began to pull off onto the right shoulder of the road and lost control of the vehicle. The driver, a man who was not wearing his seat belt, overcorrected to the left, causing the vehicle to fishtail.†

The Mazda crossed the center line into the northbound traffic lane, colliding head-on with a Honda Accord. The Accord rolled into the northbound ditch, coming to rest on its top.†

The Honda driver was wearing her seat belt, but was pinned in her vehicle because of severe front-end damage. She was pronounced dead at the scene.†

The Mazdaís passenger, a woman who was wearing her seat belt, was transported via ALERT helicopter to Kalispell Regional Medical Center. The driver was transported to the hospital via ground ambulance.†

Underwood said the accident is still under investigation by the Montana Highway Patrol. The victimís name has not yet been released until officials notify family members.†

Reporter Brittany Brevik may be reached at 758-4459 or by email at bbrevik@dailyinterlake.com.

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