A placid, upstate New York community was struck by tragedy on Wednesday night. A crash that left veteran firefighters speechless claimed the lives of four small children and three adults.
The trailer of a salvage truck broke free and skirted across the lonely stretch of Route 13 before slamming into the mini-van that the victims had been passengers in.
Police have begun investigating the possible causes of the crash, continuing the work of area firefighters who responded en mass to assist the victims. Many of the responders were visibly troubled by the disturbing accident.
“What did we just see? Did that just really happen?” said Ken Stone, the assistant chief of the Truxton Fire Department of the firefighters’ shocked response. “You get all that training and you’re not ready for it.”
One of the twenty firefighters who responded to the crash, Stone said that the driver of the mini-van appeared to notice the trailer and took evasive action in an attempt to avoid it.
“They tried to miss it, but he ran out of time,” said Stone. “It was humbling, especially young kids. It tears you up.”
The reported victims, all from the Truxton area, include Teresa Bush and her daughters Alexis and Jasmine Bush. In addition, Lena Beckwith, Carino Vanorden, and siblings Alyssa and Tyler Mead were killed.
Shawn Mead, Alyssa and Tyler Mead’s father, has been listed in good condition at the Upstate University Hospital.
According to Stone, the victims were believed to have died upon impact with some coming to rest underneath the trailer.
“It was all instant, no doubt,” he said.
Ryan Dorward is believed to have been driving the Newton Salvage truck and to have been accompanied by Duane Newton. They could not be reached for comment.
Neither man was injured in the crash.
The New York Department of Transportation requires that trucks be inspected at least once year and are subjected to random checks by state troopers or Department officials, said Jennifer Post, spokesperson for the Department of Transportation. A “walk-around” inspection is also required by all drivers before every trip. These inspections require that the coupling between the tractor and trailer, brakes, and the tire condition and pressure be observed.
A roadside inspection was conducted on the truck in March of this year, revealing three minor violations: no reflective tape, being four percent overweight, and the vehicle missing a fire extinguisher. According to the state DOT, none of these violations resulted in the truck being deemed out of service. Newton Salvage has been in business since 2012.
A small community of 1,100, Truxton is located roughly twenty-five miles south of Syracuse in central New York.
Lifelong Truxton resident Ann Maxson said, “It’s the worst thing I’ve ever seen. It’s just a horrible thing. It gives me goose bumps.”
Members of the deceased family came together early Thursday at a farmhouse close to the site of the crash. A sign erected close to the accident site reads: “Please drive safely. We (heart) our children.”
An experienced attorney can help determine who is at fault in vehicle accidents like this and help you obtain any compensation you may be entitled to. Contact experienced, trucking accident attorney Jeffrey Killino today.
Motorcycle Accident Causes Injury in Hersheypark, Pennsylvania
A serious traffic collision occurred just before 5:30 yesterday afternoon in Dauphin County. The accident took place on Hersheypark Drive and Laudermilch Road.
Witnesses claimed that the incident involved an out-of-control motorcycle, and that the victim was thrown from the vehicle into the road in the middle of an intersection. Authorities limited use of the road as they cleared the scene, which slowed travel through the area.
At time of publication local emergency operators were unable to comment on the condition on the operator, who is believed to be the only victim.