UPDATED 5:38 p.m. - An Argyle man was killed in the first Grant County fatal traffic accident of 2013 March 4.
At approximately 1:04 p.m., a Grant County Sheriff’s Deputy witnessed a crash occur on USH 61 about .10 miles north of Hwy 81. Mathew Cline, 26 of Argyle, was driving a 1991 Buick north on USH 61 and began to slide on the snow that had blown across the road. Cline’s vehicle struck the semi trailer of 2012 Peterbilt tractor driven by Joel Strangstalien, 27 of Coon Valley. Strangstalien was going south on USH 61.
Clines vehicle came to rest in the northbound lane of USH 61. Lancaster Fire Department, Lancaster EMS, and Potosi EMS responded to the scene. Mathew Cline was pronounced deceased at the scene by the Grant County Coroner. Richard Niemeyer Jr. 42, Tonday Niemeyer 40, and Kevin Niemeyer, 16 all of Benton were passengers in Cline’s vehicle. All three were transported to Grant Regional Health Center for their injuries. In Cline’s vehicle only Richard Niemeyer Jr. was wearing a seatbelt and no air bags were deployed. Strangstalien was wearing his seatbelt and was uninjured.
Cline’s vehicle received heavy damage and was removed from the scene by Bennett’s Towing of Lancaster. Strangstalien’s trailer received moderate damage and was removed from the scene by Guys Trucking of Kieler.
Also assisting at the scene was the Lancaster Police Department, Wisconsin State Patrol, and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. One of the contributing factors in this crash involved improper tires on Cline’s vehicle. Both lanes of USH 61 were closed for approximately two hours.
Firefighters fought a bitter cold winds blowing from the east at the scene.