UPDATE: 1 dead in serious motor vehicle crash on US-2 in Bessemer

GOGEBIC COUNTY, Mich. (WLUC) - UPDATE: Thursday, July 12, 8:06 p.m.

US-2 in Bessemer has reopened to traffic.
The Gogebic County Sheriff's Office is continuing its investigation into an accident that took the life of a 41-year-old Wakefield man.

Authorities say the initial investigation indicates Rex Robert Smith of Wakefield was traveling eastbound on US-2 near Fairview Drive when he lost control and spun into the westbound lane.

Smith's vehicle collided with a vehicle driven by Alvin Liikanen, 86, of Ironwood. Liikanen and his passenger, 87-year-old Barbara Liikanen, were transported to Aspirus Ironwood Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Smith was extricated using the Jaws of Life. He was also taken to the hospital and later pronounced dead.

Authorities say speed and reckless driving are believed to be factors in the accident.
UPDATE: Thursday, July 12, 5:28 P.M:

US-2 in Bessemer remains closed at this time as Gogebic County Sheriff’s Office deputies continue their investigation into a fatal motor vehicle crash that occurred near the intersection of US-2 and Fairview Drive.

According to authorities, the crash was reported to 911 around 2:00 in the afternoon on Thursday, July 12th. Three victims were transported to Aspirus Ironwood Hospital. At this time there is one confirmed fatality.

Traffic is being re-routed vis the Industrial Park Access Road to Old County Road to Puritan Road. An alternative route around the accident scene is North Moore St. to Black River Road to Powderhorn Road.

The Sheriff’s Office is being assisted in the investigation by Advance Accident Investigators from the Michigan State Police-Wakefield Post. Initial responders included Michigan State Police, Beacon Ambulance, Bessmer City Fire Department, and the Department of Natural Resources.

No names are being released at this time pending notification of family.
Gogebic County Sheriffs will give another update when the roadway is cleared and normal traffic has resumed.



The Gogebic County Sheriff's Office have closed US-2 near Fairview Drive in Bessmer due to a serious motor vehicle accident.

Motorists are asked to avoid the area at this time.

Alternative routes are Puritan Rd. to Plywood Plant Access Road or North Moore St. to Black River Road to Powderhorn Rd.

No further information is being released at this time.

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