Traffic blocked on Gumwood

Published 7:09 am Saturday, June 25, 2005

By Staff
NILES - On Friday afternoon, at approximately 1 p.m. troopers from the Niles Michigan State Police Post were dispatched to a single vehicle crash on Gumwood Road, just south of Redfield Road in Cass County's Milton Township.
The single vehicle was traveling North on Gumwood from Indiana and failed to negotiate a curve. The vehicle then left the right side of the road and traveled through the grassy shoulder until it struck a tree head on and caught fire.
The only occupant of the vehicle was identified as Irvin Zavasty, 79, of Elkhart, Ind.
A first responder, Bryan House of Michiana, witnessed the crash and was able to remove Zavasty from the vehicle before the fire could injure him any further.
Fire departments from Niles Township and Clay Township, Ind. responded to the scene to control the car fire.
Zavasty sustained lacerations to his face from striking his windshield as he was not wearing his seatbelt.
He was conscious and talking after the crash and was transported to South Bend Memorial Hospital for further evaluation.
No more information on his condition was available at press time.
Officers from the St. Joseph County Indiana Police Department advised troopers they had received several cell phone calls about Zavasty driving through red lights and swerving on the road in Indiana prior to the crash.
It appears that Zavasty's previous medical conditions may have been a factor in the crash.
The incident remains under investigation according to the Michigan State Police.