September 1, 2014

Snowmobile crashes claim two more lives

Wisconsin snowmobile deaths are at their highest level in three years, after two more riders were killed over the weekend. The deaths bring the total to 18 for this snowy winter.

Only 10 snowmobilers died during last season’s mild winter, while 17 riders were killed two years ago. This winter is the deadliest since 2010, when 21 people lost their lives in snowmobile crashes.

The latest victim died Saturday on a public trail near Mercer in far northern Wisconsin. The state Department of Natural Resources says one machine crested a hill, and landed on top of an oncoming snowmobile. Other details were not immediately available.

The other fatal mishap was in Rock County in far southern Wisconsin. Authorities say 47-year-old Willie Guzman of Beloit drove his machine into a patch of open water on Lake Koshkonong. A companion also fell in, but was able to walk to shore and seek help.