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Lansing, Michigan

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Michigan Motorcyclist Killed By Downed Tree

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A west Michigan man was killed early Tuesday morning when he struck a tree that had been felled by Monday’s powerful storms. According to the Van Buren County Sheriff’s Department, construction barrels warning motorists of the obstacle had been removed sometime Monday night. The motorcyclist had been wearing a helmet and traveling at a prudent speed, but was apparently unable to avoid hitting the tree after cresting a hill.

This fatal crash leaves many questions unanswered. Most importantly, why were the construction barrels removed while the obstacle remained in the road? By all accounts, the victim did everything a motorcyclist should do: he was wearing a helmet and obeying the speed limit. While the storm system that moved through lower Michigan earlier this week was responsible for many downed trees and power lines, this particular hazard had been identified and a barrier set up.

All fatal accidents are tragedies. This one seems particularly awful because potentially life-saving warnings had been inexplicably removed from the area prior to the crash.