Fatal Traffic Crash, Burnside Township

Lapeer County Sheriff EmblemOn Friday 11-18-2016 at 10:15 AM, Lapeer County 911 dispatched Lapeer County Sheriff’s Deputies to a personal injury traffic crash on Burnside Road (M-90) near Churchill Road in Brown City (Lapeer County’s Burnside Township).

James Schaffer age 29 from North Branch was the driver and sole occupant of a westbound 1998 Ford Expedition.   Schaffer crossed over the center line into the path of an eastbound Freightliner semi owned by Country Fresh of Grand Rapids, Michigan driven by Bruce Pullman age 51 from Utica.    Pullman was delivering ice cream to a business in Yale, Michigan when the crash occurred.

The crash was considered “head on”.   The Ford Expedition driven by Shaffer departed the north side of the roadway and came to rest on its side.    Shaffer was ejected from the vehicle and was pronounced deceased at the scene.

The front axle of the semi driven by Pullman broke during the collision and the vehicle came to rest within the center of the roadway.   Pullman was transported to McLaren in Lapeer for non-life threatening injuries.

The roadway was closed for approximately 4 ½ hours for rescue; investigation; and wreckage removal by Yakes Towing in North Branch.

Preliminary investigation suggest that neither excessive speeds over the 55 MPH speed limit or alcohol are factors in this fatal traffic crash.

The Lapeer County Sheriff’s Office was assisted at the scene by Brown City Fire Department,  Michigan State Police Lapeer Regional Post,  and the Michigan State Police Motor Carrier Division.   This traffic crash remains under investigation by the Lapeer County Sheriff’s Office.

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