It's been another tragic weekend in the state of Iowa as the number of deaths on Iowa roadways continues to rocket above previous years.

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A weekend that started with a fatal accident on an eastern Iowa lake, also included a pair of fatal crashes on Iowa highways and interstates.

Two Cedar Rapids residents were killed on Lake MacBride in Johnson County when their canoe overturned at approximately 3:45 p.m. on Friday.

Two Iowa Teenagers Killed in Crash

Also on Friday, a two-vehicle accident in south central Iowa killed two people and injured four others.

19-year-old Madalynn Stewart of Maloy, Iowa was traveling on 190th Street, approaching Highway 34 in rural Union County, when an accident happened just before 10:30 p.m. Friday (7/21) night.

According to the Iowa State Patrol, Stewart didn't stop at a stop sign and traveled onto Highway 34. The Chevy Malibu she was driving was struck on the driver's side by a Ford F350 pickup driven by 59-year-old Andy Merritt of Seymour, Iowa.

One of Stewart's passengers, 19-year-old Halsie Barnes of Tingley, Iowa, passed away at the scene. 19-year-old Ella Leonard of Winterset died at a hospital on Sunday from injuries she suffered in the crash.

Barnes and Leonard both attended Southwestern Community College in Creston, where Barnes played softball and Leonard was on the dance team. The college is holding a candlelight service in their memory Tuesday night.

Stewart and another passenger in her vehicle, 20-year-old Abigail Barnes of Lamoni, were also transported to area hospitals Friday night in critical condition.

Merritt and his passenger, 62-year-old Julia Merritt of Seymour, sustained minor injuries in the accident.

One Person Killed in Sunday Accident on I-80 in Cedar County

Sunday (7/23) afternoon, just before 5:30 p.m., a 2023 Freightliner Cascadia, was traveling eastbound on I-80 near mile-marker 259 (West Liberty/Springdale exit) when the vehicle left the roadway for an unknown reason.

The Iowa State Patrol says the driver overcorrected, rolled the semi, and died at the scene. The driver has not been identified, pending notification of the family.

The Number of Fatalities on Iowa Roadways is Skyrocketing

198 people have now been killed on Iowa roadways in 2023. That is 25 more than the highest number of deaths (through July 23), in the previous five years. The number of deaths on Iowa roadways over each of the past six years is below.

*All numbers represent deaths through July 23 of the year listed.

  • 2023: 198
  • 2022: 173
  • 2021: 166
  • 2020: 140
  • 2019: 168
  • 2018: 169

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