Howard City woman causes multiple accidents, critically injures man

Posted by Elisabeth Waldon • Last Updated 11:23 am on Thursday, March 22 2012

HOWARD CITY – A Howard City woman is responsible for causing multiple accidents this morning, leaving a man in critical condition and others seriously injured.

Montcalm County Central Dispatch received a report of an accident at 9:20 a.m.

According to Montcalm County Undersheriff Mark Bellinger, Nicole Stapleton of Winfield Township (Howard City) was the driver at fault.

Howard City Fire Chief Randy Heckman was one of the first to respond to the scene.

Heckman said Stapleton was driving north on Federal Road (old 131) when she rear-ended a car at Kendaville Road. That car contained a driver and a passenger, according to Bellinger.

Stapleton continued on toward Howard City at a high rate of speed. She rear-ended another car which was pulling out from near the Howard City Motel. That car spun around, hitting a fourth oncoming car.

Stapleton just missed hitting the Dairy Bear ice cream parlor and drove her car into a tree.

Stapleton and the man who was hit near the motel were both transported via AeroMed to a Grand Rapids hospital. The man from Gladstone is believed to have critical injuries.

Two more people with serious injuries were taken by ambulance to local hospitals.

Other than Stapleton, names are not known, but everyone is believed to be from the Howard City area other than the Gladstone man, according to Bellinger.

The Michigan State Police responded to the first accident at Kendaville and Federal just south of Howard City. The Montcalm County Sheriff’s Office responded to the second series of accidents in Howard City. It’s a joint investigation at this time.

“At this time we don’t know if alcohol or medical conditions were a factor,” Bellinger said.

The Howard City Fire Department helped with traffic control and patient care.

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