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Backus, MN (KROC AM News) -  A Steele County man was one of three people killed in a traffic crash in northern Minnesota late Thursday night.

It happened around 11:15 pm near the town of Backus.

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The State Patrol says an SUV driven by 55-year-old Jeffrey Wertish of Ellendale was T-boned by another vehicle that ran a stop sign. Wertish was killed as was a passenger identified as 59-year-old Robert Nelson of Carver. A second passenger identified as 25-year-old Jared Wertish of Ellendale suffered non-life-threatening injuries. The other driver was also killed. He was identified as 34-year-old Lenny Steffen of Backus.

The State Patrol says neither driver was wearing a seatbelt.

MN State Patrol

There was also a fatal crash Thursday in southwest Minnesota involving two semi-trucks.

The State Patrol reported three fatal traffic wrecks on Wednesday. One of the victims was a Rochester man who was fatally injured after crashing a truck near Austin.

News update:  Another crash at bad Rochester area intersection.

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Stacker used data from the 2020 County Health Rankings to rank every state's average life expectancy from lowest to highest. The 2020 County Health Rankings values were calculated using mortality counts from the 2016-2018 National Center for Health Statistics. The U.S. Census 2019 American Community Survey and America's Health Rankings Senior Report 2019 data were also used to provide demographics on the senior population of each state and the state's rank on senior health care, respectively.

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