Updated:
Original:

More motorcycle deaths in MN as husband and wife killed in accident

Author:

A husband and wife have been killed in a motorcycle crash southwest of the Twin Cities metro area – continuing an alarming trend of biker deaths in Minnesota.

The Star Tribune reports that Patrick and Heidi Gongoll, both 41, of Norwood Young America, died when the former lost control of his motorcycle on County Road 11 in Dahlgren Township, near Chaska, just after 10 p.m. Wednesday.

It brings the total number of motorcycle fatalities in Minnesota this year to 36, the newspaper notes, compared to 17 at this point last year and 46 in total during 2014, Minnesota Department of Public Safety statistics show.

The Carver County Sheriff's Office told KSTP that neither of the victims were wearing helmets at the time of the accident, which saw them thrown from their motorcycle after it hit a field approach.

Heidi Gongoll was declared dead at the scene, while her husband was taken by ambulance to Two Twelve Medical Center in Chaska, where he died from his injuries, reports note.

Could training help reduce spike in deaths?

While the number of motorcycle deaths in Minnesota is rising, participation in motorcycle safety training courses is not.

The St. Cloud Times spoke to Bill Shaffer, motorcycle safety coordinator with the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, who said he could see the number of deaths surpassing 80 this year, adding that many of the crashes are caused by "rider error and inexperience."

Yet with 414,000 licensed riders in Minnesota, only between 300 and 400 each year take a safety course beyond the first "Basic Rider Course," the newspaper notes, with some in St. Cloud having to be canceled due to low sign-ups.

"Some of the inexperience you see is dangerous," teacher Tom Travaglio told the newspaper. "You see people on the roads who can't shift, can't balance."

You can find out more about motorcycle rider training courses on the Minnesota Department Public of Safety website.

Next Up

Ambulance hospital emergency

Driver killed after crashing into parked semi-trailer

The crash occurred on the 5800 block of University Avenue Northeast.

Mike Zimmer

Vikings-Panthers: 5 things you can count on happening

The Vikings will look to open things up in Carolina.

Tanner Morgan/Gopher Football

Morgan's resurgence, Nebraska's miscues help Gophers hold on

The Gophers quarterback threw a pair of touchdowns in a 30-23 victory.

Tina Smith

Sen. Tina Smith warns Dems she may not vote for budget bill if climate plan dropped

This comes amid a White House effort to get its "Build Back Better" plan passed.

Pixabay - emergency room ambulance hospital

St. Paul man dies six days after crash on I-94

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner has identified the man as David Rodney Hardaway.

police lights squad car dark - Unsplash

Double murder in northeastern Minnesota, suspect kills himself after chase

The suspect died at the scene from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

chaska school fight

Anti-masker involved in school board meeting fight charged with assault

It happened last month at an Eastern Carver County Schools hearing.

Marcus Foligno

Marcus Foligno throws hands, scores game-winning goal in Wild's opener

The Wild forward scored with 7.2 seconds left to beat Anaheim.

Screen Shot 2021-10-15 at 10.01.55 PM

Large police presence at Emagine Willow Creek movie theater in Plymouth

There are few details at this stage as to what has happened.

Maple Grove Police Department

Maple Grove-based businessman convicted of fatally shooting wife

Wiseman owns properties in both Minnesota, Nevada and China.

betty and earls biscuits facebook

Jason Matheson's biscuit shop to briefly close ahead of relaunch

Betty & Earl's will shut down for two weeks before reopening under a new name.

Simon Merino Go Fund Me

Worker dies in forklift accident at paper recycling business

The victim was described as a loving father of two who was devoted to his church.

Related

Rollover crash kills husband, wife in Itasca County

A Grand Rapids couple is dead after a single-vehicle crash on Highway 46 northeast of Bemidji just before midnight Saturday night, the Star Tribune reports. The Minnesota State Patrol reports the crash killed the driver, Joy L. Wilson, 54, and her husband, Donald G. Wilson, 56. Neither were wearing their seat belt.