WDAY: The News Leader

Published July 15, 2010, 02:25 PM

Head-on crash near Ulen leaves 3 people dead; victims identified

Ulen, Minn. (WDAY TV) - 7 people have died in Lakes Country roads in the last 16-days. That includes this afternoon's fatal crash near Ulen, Minnesota. Authorities say they never get used to scenes like this today. 3 people dead, after a head-on collision. The State Patrol says it could have been as simple as not paying attention.

Two vehicles heading the opposite direction on Hwy 32 hit head on, killing two of the three people involved. The third person was Life-Flighted to Innovis in Fargo where she died.

The Minnesota State Patrol identified all three people this morning:

- Delphine L. Braaten, 77, of Fargo

- Harriet D. Selleys, 65, of Fargo

- Deette K. Tinkler, 39, of Moorhead

Lt. Mike Hanson: "We have no reason to believe that anything was excessive, but vehicles traveling at 55-miles per hour have an awful lot of energy and when they collide in the near 100-percent overlap collision. There is a lot of energy that's transferred.”

The woman driving this green intrepid, Deette Tinkler, crossed over the center line striking this van driven by Delphine Braaten. Authorities say all three women involved in the crash were wearing their seat belts.

Sheriff Bill Bergquist: "It probably wouldn't have mattered how quickly we got there, it kind of hurts when you see things like this happen."

The Detroit Lakes district of the Minnesota state patrol has responded to three fatal crashes since June 29th. One in Perham, where two were killed, 2 in Dent, and this one today, which brings the death toll to six.

Lt. Mike Hanson: "We've had a spade of them recently, and for whatever reason all of them seem to involve fatalities across our district they're all really taking a toll.”

Police say the simplest, but most forgotten thing about driving is paying attention and an un-distracted driver is a driver that can save not only your life but others to.

Lt. Mike Hanson: "We've all been to a number of these things and every one of them will tell you, yeah you leave a little bit of yourself at these things."

The Minnesota state patrol says the names and ages of the victims will be released tomorrow.