Skip to main content

1-year-old, 2 adults killed in head-on crash after driver tries to pass car on 2-lane road

The driver was trying to pass another car on a rural two-lane highway.

The Essentials

1. A driver attempting to pass on a rural two-lane highway smashed head-on into a vehicle coming the other direction, killing herself, a 1-year-old passenger, and the driver of the other car.

2. The crash happened just after 5 p.m. Saturday on Highway 71, about a mile west of Morton in southwest Minnesota, the State Patrol says. Driver Shaunna Kraft, 34 years old, was headed north, with three others in the car – the toddler, a 7-year-old and a a 27-year-old. 

3. Kraft tried to pass another car while going over a bridge, but collided head-on with a vehicle driving south, according to the State Patrol. The driver of that car, 41-year-old Teresa Linde, also died. The other two passengers in Kraft's car (a 7-year-old and a 27-year-old) were taken to Twin Cities hospitals with life-threatening injuries.

The Big Picture

Minnesota's law for passing while on a two-lane highway boils down to: you can do it if it's safe. 

As a driver, you're allowed to cross the center line to pass someone only if the path is "clearly visible and is free of oncoming traffic," with enough space to not put anyone in harm's way. 

The most specific the law gets is that you have to get back into the right-hand lane before you're within 100 feet of an oncoming vehicle. You're also only supposed to go 10 mph above the posted speed limit.

There are additional rules about not passing when your view in the distance is obstructed, when there are signs telling you not to, and if you're nearing certain features such as a tunnel.

Head-on crashes don't happen frequently, accounting for only 5 percent of the total number of wrecks, MnDOT has found.

But they are deadly, making up more than 18 percent of all fatal crashes. 

Passing isn't a very common cause however.

MnDOT looked at 251 fatal, head-on crashes from 2009-2013 and found that only seven of them – that's 2.8 percent – were a result of passing.

Someone drifting over the centerline was the cause of nearly two-thirds of those wrecks. 

Next Up

bmw-g1a1c50760_1280

Man, woman arrested after shots fired from BMW at 3 motorcyclists

The driver of the BMW led police on a chase, driving the wrong way on state highways.

Screen Shot 2022-08-10 at 2.02.48 PM

Drive Shack Inc. announces upcoming 'Puttery' venue in Minneapolis

The growing business backed by Rory McIlroy is coming to the Twin Cities.

Screen Shot 2022-08-08 at 7.13.33 AM

BCA: Man was 'running towards' deputy with knife before fatal shooting

The Minnesota BCA has identified the four deputies who fired weapons.

Gov. Tim Walz and Scott Jensen.

MN Gun Owners Caucus won't endorse gubernatorial candidate in 2022

The organization endorsed Scott Jensen for Minnesota Senate in 2016.

WCCO building

Man who threw gun on WCCO roof charged with murder, manslaughter

The man originally lied and claimed someone else shot the victim.

Semi into house near Sturgis, South Dakota

Semi drives into house near Sturgis, South Dakota

The force from the semi was so strong that the foundation of the house was moved.

ambulance

18-year-old from Zumbrota dies in Goodhue County crash

The crash happened in rural Goodhue County around 8:45 a.m. Wednesday.

thomas beach, bde maka ska - lake calhoun

3 Minneapolis beaches closed due to E. coli contamination

No illnesses have been reported, according to the MPRB.

Hockeyland1

'Hockeyland' documentary debuting in Minnesota movie theaters

The documentary has received great reviews at numerous film festivals.

Flickr - police lights squad siren - Edward Kimmel

Former Minnesota Olympic runner accused of driving drunk in Eden Prairie crash

Police said the man's blood alcohol level was three times the legal limit.

ATV

Man, 79, killed in ATV rollover near Faribault

The man was declared dead at the scene.

minneapolis police

Woman fighting for her life after shooting in Minneapolis

The woman was shot only about a half-hour after a 14-year-old suffered critical injuries in an apparent accidental discharge.

Related

hwy-55-at-co-rd-6-eastbound-645am-april-26-2019-resize

Pedestrian crash closes Hwy. 55 in west metro

A person trying to cross the highway was struck by a car.

Man drives on to shoulder, crashes into unoccupied car

The man suffered life-threatening injuries.

2 Twin Cities bicyclists hit by cars in the past 2 days

One of the wrecks left the cyclist fighting for his life, and the driver fled the scene.

Driver gets pulled from burning car by passersby

The vehicle hit a bridge in east-central Minnesota.

Watch: Driver swerves at the last second to avoid head-on crash

A terrifyingly close call on a Minnesota highway.