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Posted on Sat, Mar 24, 2012 : 4:35 p.m.

Michigan Avenue closed at Carpenter after serious motorcycle crash

By Paula Gardner

This story was updated at 7:20 p.m.

Pittsfield Township police closed Michigan Avenue at Carpenter Road, just east of US-23, for nearly two hours Saturday afternoon due to a serious accident.

Police said they closed the road at about 4:30 p.m. as they were in the early stages of conducting an accident investigation after a motorcycle collided with a car that had stopped mid-turn in the intersection.

Police said a driver was turning northbound on Carpenter from eastbound Michigan when the motorcyclist approached.

The driver - who had followed a couple of other cars into the turn, according to police - stopped.

The motorcyclist was unable to avoid her, police said, according to their initial investigation.

The victim, identified as a 27-year-old Pittsfield Township resident, was taken to an area hospital. A Pittsfield Township fire fighter assigned to the rescue unit drove the Huron Valley Ambulance for paramedics to allow them to tend to the victim.

The motorcyclist initially was thought to have suffered life-threatening injuries, according to police. However, police said later on Saturday that he's expected to recover.

The driver, a 25-year-old Ypsilanti resident, was not injured.

Police are asking witnesses to the crash to contact them at 734-822-4911.



Mon, Mar 26, 2012 : 5:15 p.m.

I'm sorry, but I've seen many comments asking "which was way the motorcycle traveling" and still no answer. One would assume the motorcyclist was traveling on Michigan Ave. But was it East/West? Heck, it's so vague the bike could have been traveling on Carpenter and running a red light! Point is, with all the questions... perhaps the staff could answer that one?

Lori Turner

Mon, Mar 26, 2012 : 3:10 p.m.

As a rider, and passing this accident Saturday, I have been concerned at the condition of the young man in this accident. Could you please follow up with an update? Thank you!


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 7:02 p.m.

It's not confusting at all. The driver stopped in the middle of the intersection and the motorcycle--not expecting this to happen--hit the car. Sounds like the driver was at fault. Why did she stop? Perhaps the motorcycle was too close, but still--she shouldn't have stopped suddenly. I agree that this is a pretty dangerous intersection. And it shows how motorcycles are dangerous--not because they are motorcycles but because car drivers do not see them. My 36 year old friend was killed on a motorcycle 9 years ago on Carpenter Rd. near Meijer. It was the first warm day of spring and the van that killed him did not see him. At most hospitals motorcycles are referred to as 'donor cycles' because of all the fatalities they cause and the resulting organ donations. We do need to SLOW DOWN and we need to pay attention to all vehicles--2 wheeled, 4 wheeled or whatever. Be ALERT and do not become complacent about driving. I hope this motorcyclist will be ok.


Mon, Mar 26, 2012 : 12:03 a.m.

So, since it's not confusing to you...which way was the motorcycle going? Was he also traveling east and planning on turning left (north) behind the car? If so, he would have been at fault for not maintaining a safe stopping distance. Or, was he coming west and the motorist no longer had a left turn light? In that case too, he needs to be assured that he can stop if someone pulls out in front of him. He cannot assume anything.


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 4:38 p.m.

This is a really bad intersection due to the way the traffic lights are timed. This is the scenario I have been a witness to too many times: 1) Cars are heading north/south on Carpenter Road due to green lights in both directions. 2) Cars heading due-north on Carpenter get the red light. 3) Cars that were heading south on Carpenter and want to turn left onto Michigan Ave (toward Ypsi) now have the green light. 4) Cars heading due-south still have a green light 5) Cars that were heading north and want to turn left onto Michigan Ave (toward US-23) still have a blinking red but assume cars heading south have the red now and start to turn. 6) Accidents, horns, or near misses occur. There are too many incidents due to the above and I don't know why the road commission will not fix the timing and un-stagger the lights. I've emailed them multiple times. Maybe others need to also write in?


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 4:25 p.m.

Paula said "not making a right turn" Not that NO turn was made. Going East on US12 turning North on Carpenter would be a LEFT turn. I bet the driver had the "Blinking Yellow Arrow" that has caused so much death in this state. When will Michigan remove these? So many drivers move into the intersection because the vehicle in front turned, without seeing that the arrow is Yellow (Yeild) not Green (right of way)


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 3:38 p.m.

@ justcurious, It never said which way the motorcyclist was traveling. It did say the car stopped in the middle of her turn, how is that considered not turning?


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 11:55 p.m.

"I just updated this story. There is no fatality, according to police. Also, the car was eastbound and not making a right turn." This is what made me think they were not making a turn.


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 2:49 p.m.

What is it with the police and the closing of roads after an accident? Years ago, they never did this. Now-a-days, it seems like they close roads at the drop of a hat. Methinks that this is unchecked power gone awry.


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 11:53 p.m.

An investigation needs to be done, distances measured, skid marks, point of impact, witness statements, EMTwork, etc., etc. Sometimes the accident vehicles can't just "pull to the side of the road".

Frustrated in A2

Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 11:21 p.m.

A crash scene can be a crime scene depending on the extent of injuries. It can also result in a civil suit. You don't want traffic driving through a crime scene so that you can preserve evidence. With any scene you don't want to lose or destroy evidence, unfortunately most crash scenes are on roadways.


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 7:49 p.m.

They ALWAYS do and ALWAYS have when they think there maybe a fatality


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 2:23 p.m.

Paula said in her comment that the car was traveling eastbound (toward Ypsilanti) at the Carpenter/Michigan Ave intersection. She also said it was not turning. The motorcyclist must have been traveling behind the car and the car must have stopped while going through the intersection. The motorcycle must have hit the car in the rear because of the sudden stop. Perhaps safe stopping distance was not maintained in this case by the motorcyclist, though in this situation it could be difficult. Slower speed can help though. Per usual, not enough information in the article and jumping the gun by posting erroneous information early on. Motorcyclist protect yourselves with good safety gear and high beams during the day, 4 wheelers please Look Twice, Save A Life.


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 12:46 p.m.

I think this one of the most dangerous intersections in the county!


Mon, Mar 26, 2012 : 6:20 a.m.

No! You just need to pay more attention to the road. Every intersection is dangerous! You people in cars NEVER pay attention to us two-wheeled drivers!! That's why we have to drive our bike and drive your car!!!! Sorry to say but.... All us bikers out there will agree with me, and I am a female biker too!!!!!


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 2:48 p.m.

I totally agree. Even after they revamped it, lites and all, it is still heavily traveled and heavily unmanageable.

Monica R-W

Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 9:08 a.m.

As a motorcycle rider and the warmer weather starting a bit early this year, for drivers with 4 wheels or above, please be aware of the drivers with only two wheels. You as a car driver have a little extra protection in a accident. We, in the same aspect, have our gear and hopefully a higher power on our side. Glad to read that the rider will recover from the sustained injuries!

Butter nuts

Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 8:08 a.m.

I'm so tired of Spring/Summer happening and Bikers driving (riding) too fast. Slow it down people. It happens every year. Slooowww dooowwwnnn, And Live to Enjoy the Ride.

Jimmy McNulty

Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 12:45 p.m.

Sounds as if you're blaming the motorcyclist.


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 12:33 a.m.

This is very confusing. So the car was traveling east on Michigan and not turning when the motorcycle hit it. Which direction and street was the motorcycle traveling on? Some clarification would be great. I'm interested because I am a motorcyclist myself.

Monica R-W

Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 9:11 a.m.

Thanks Aquileyendo for the additional information. Wonder did the rider missed a gear shift (which would indeed make the bike stop) or did they stop in a effort to avoid on-coming traffic?


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 1:10 a.m.

The car was coming from the direction of Sams and mcdonalds and turning left onto carpenter. It stopped in the middle of the intersection in the middle of the turn. It in the story, you just have to piece together the details cause they are not worded well.

Paula Gardner

Sat, Mar 24, 2012 : 11:26 p.m.

I just updated this story. There is no fatality, according to police. Also, the car was eastbound and not making a right turn.


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 3:46 p.m.

he was dead on the scene. the paramedics were breathing for him but he came back to life in the ambulance.

Ann English

Sat, Mar 24, 2012 : 11:07 p.m.

This is the first time I've read of a motorcyclist hitting a car making a right turn. The motorcyclist must have been coming from the south or east in order to be caught off guard by a stationary car. Was the car hit behind or on the driver's side? Did the driver suddenly realize she didn't intend to turn north on Carpenter? Usually when I read of a motorcycle hitting a car, the car is turning left into a driveway at the top of a crest, and an oncoming motorcyclist didn't see or expect the side of a car to suddenly appear in front of him.

Monica R-W

Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 9:13 a.m.

Jarta, That's correct. Motorcyclists are taught to look out for you and everyone else on the road. This is the best way to remain safe.


Sun, Mar 25, 2012 : 3:51 a.m.

Often it is a driver turning left in front of a motorcyclist because they "didnt see them" or "couldn't tell how fast they were going". Motorcyclists tend to be an alert bunch and unfortunately drivers often miss two wheeled travelers (motor or no motor).

the leprachaun

Sat, Mar 24, 2012 : 11:52 p.m.

It was a left turn by the car

Wolf's Bane

Sat, Mar 24, 2012 : 10:14 p.m.

farewell brother.


Sat, Mar 24, 2012 : 10 p.m.

at least one fatality. one car and one motorcycle.


Sat, Mar 24, 2012 : 10:27 p.m.

unfortunately not surprised