Gateway academy students injured in Traverse City crash.

March 3, 2020

Gateway academy students injured in Traverse City crash.

By Allison Scarbrough, Editor.

TRAVERSE CITY — Three Gateway to Success Academy students were injured in a two-vehicle crash Friday night, Feb. 28, in Traverse City.

One of the students remains hospitalized at Munson Medical Center in Traverse City following surgery for a broken femur, said G2S Superintendent/Principal Jamie Bandstra Tuesday morning, March 3.

The students were in Traverse City for a weekend robotics competition at Traverse City West High School, Bandstra said. The students, who were passengers in a 2007 Subaru stationwagon driven by a staff tech coach, were being transported from the event to their hotel. The staff tech coach is a 34-year-old Ludington man, according to an accident report from the Traverse City Police Department.

The student who suffered a broken femur is a 17-year-old Ludington boy. Also injured was a 15-year-old Scottville boy who received stitches to his forehead, Bandstra said. A 14-year-old Hart girl suffered some “bumps and bruises.”

The crash occurred at 9:40 p.m. on US 31 near Fitzhugh Drive after the Subaru was “cut off” by a black Jeep, the report states. The report narrative states the following:

“Unit 1 (the G2S vehicle) was northbound on Division Street in the curb lane near the Credit Union One while Unit 2 was southbound on Division Street in the curb lane also near the Credit Union One. Unit 1, as well as passengers inside, stated that a black Jeep entered the roadway to the right, cutting them off. Unit 1 then swerved attempting to avoid a collision. Unit 1 then lost control of his vehicle, crossed the center line into incoming traffic and was struck by Unit 2. Unit 1 is at fault and issued a citation.”

The report states that the G2S driver was cited for “unable to stop in assured clear distance.”

However, Bandstra said the officer at the scene told him the G2S driver was not at fault. He is attempting to contact the officer to clarify.

The road conditions were “very icy,” Bandstra said. The driver of the Jeep did not stay at the scene, he said, although the Jeep was not hit in the crash.

The superintendent said he is extremely proud of how his students handled the situation and “overcame adversity.”

“I saw a group of students who came together, and the staff stepped up,” he said. “It was a major accident — it was serious.”

Despite the severity of the situation, the students finished out the weekend competition. Bandstra said he is impressed by how they supported each other and displayed compassion for each other throughout the incident. Their attitude was so impressive that they received the “Team Spirit” award at the robotics competition.

The students visited their classmate in the hospital after surgery.

A total of 11 students from G2S traveled to Traverse City for the event, which included 39 teams.

The accident report stated that alcohol and drugs were not involved. Everyone in the car was a wearing a seat belt.

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