2 church vans roll on US-131; 2 ejected

A crash on U.S. 131 at the Ann Street exit Sunday morning.

PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Nearly an hour after one church van was involved in a crash on US-131, another church van rolled on the highway, ejecting two middle school students.

The second crash happened around 9:45 a.m. in the southbound lanes of US-131 south of Post Drive in Plainfield Township, according to the Kent County Sheriff’s Department.

A church van rollover on US-131 near Post Drive. (Feb. 16, 2014)
A church van rollover on US-131 near Post Drive. (Feb. 16, 2014)

A release from the Wellspring Community Church in Jenison said the van was carrying middle school students and youth leaders who were coming home from a retreat in Evart.

The driver lost control of the Wellspring Church van, sending it into the median. It rolled — “several times,” according to the church — and came to a stop near the northbound lanes.

In the van were three adults and eight juveniles, the sheriff’s department said.

Two of the juveniles were ejected in the crash. Their conditions were not immediately available.

Five other people in the van were taken to local hospitals for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries.

Four students have already been released after being treated for minor cuts and bruises, the church said. One person underwent surgery due to facial cuts, but is in stable condition and may be released Monday.

The child’s parents are calling this an absolute miracle as are we and we are all praising God for His protection of all of the children involved in the accident,” the release says in part. “We praise God for His protection and we’re praising Him that the serious injuries that might’ve happened were avoided.”

Alcohol was not a factor in the crash, authorities said. It remains under investigation.

Another church van also crashed on southbound US-131 near Ann Street in Grand Rapids around 9 a.m., according to Michigan State Police. The three men and one woman in the van were going to the Wellspring Church on Wealthy Street in Grand Rapids.

The driver, 60, lost control and the vehicle rolled into the median. Three people were taken to Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital release with minor injuries.

MSP says snow and driving too fast for the conditions contributed to the crash, which remains under investigation.

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