A Forest County snowmobiler was among five sledders killed last weekend across Wisconsin, according to Department of Natural Resources (DNR) officials.

Authorities said two snowmobiles were traveling eastbound on a snowmobile trail on frozen Pickerel Lake in the town of Nashville in Forest County about 8:30 p.m. Saturday when a passenger and operator on the lead snowmobile were ejected. The male ejected passenger then was struck by the second snowmobile, which was traveling behind as part of the same group. 

The passenger was severely injured and died prior to a medical flight to the hospital. Alcohol and speed are possible factors in the accident, according to DNR wardens.

The DNR also reported a 43-year-old female snowmobiler died as a result of a crash in the town of Carey in Iron County last Friday, when a snowmobile with a single operator collided with a vehicle on a state highway. The operator was hospitalized and later died, according to the DNR. 

The other snowmobile fatalities were in Langlade, Dunn and Calumet counties.

Lt. Roy Zellmer of the DNR’s Bureau of Law Enforcement, said investigations are underway in all the accidents.

“These are tragic losses of life. The wardens are working with local law enforcement partners on each investigation,” Zellmer said. “The identifications of the victims will be determined and announced by the coroners or medical examiners in each county upon notification of family members.”

There have been a total of 14 snowmobile fatalities during the 2018-’19 winter season, including four in Oneida County, two in Forest County, one in Iron County and one in Langlade County. 

Brief summaries of the other three snowmobile fatalities last weekend follow:

• Langlade County: On Saturday, Feb. 9, a 41-year-old female snowmobiler collided with an automobile on a state highway in the town of Parrish. The snowmobile operator was killed. 

• Dunn County: On Saturday, Feb. 9, a 29-year-old male snowmobiler was traveling southbound on a designated snowmobile trail in the town of Colfax about 7:30 p.m. It appears the snowmobile operator lost control of the snowmobile, left the trail and was ejected. The operator, a 29-year-old male from rural Boyceville, was pronounced dead at the scene by the Dunn County Medical Examiner’s Office. Speed is a possible contributing factor to this crash, according to the DNR.

• Calumet County: On Saturday, Feb. 9, a single snowmobile operator was traveling on Lake Winnebago about 4:30 p.m. when it appears the machine struck a snowbank or an ice crack. The machine landed atop the operator. Alcohol and speed are possible factors in the accident, according to the DNR.