SEVEN people have tragically died after a pickup truck towing a trailer smashed head-on into a group of 10 motorcycles in the U.S. state of New Hampshire.
New Hampshire State Police said a 2016 Dodge 2500 pickup truck collided with the riders on U.S. 2 in Randolph on Friday evening.
Witnesses have described the scene as “horrific”, with bodies littering the rural highway and motorcycle parts strewn across the road.
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The pickup truck was on fire, burning on the side of the road when emergency services arrived at the scene.
At least seven motorcyclists were killed, many on impact, while three others were taken to various hospitals.
State police said two injured riders were transported to the Androscoggin Valley Hospital, while the third was flown to Maine Medical. Two were discharged from hospital on Saturday.
— South Florida Sun Sentinel (@SunSentinel) June 22, 2019
Authorities in New Hampshire say seven people have been killed in a crash between a pickup truck and several motorcycles on a rural highway. A 2016 Dodge 2500 pickup truck collided with the riders on U.S. 2 in Randolph Friday. The pickup was on fire when emergency crews arrived pic.twitter.com/p22QVoiN0I
— Sherman (@Shermanbot) June 22, 2019
The cause of the deadly collision, which involved members of Marine JarHeads MC, a motorcycle club made up of Marine veterans and their spouses, is not yet known.
The driver of the pickup – identified as Volodoymyr Zhukovskyy, 23, an employee of Westfield Transport – somehow survived the horrific collision.
State police said the driver was not taken to hospital and has not been charged, as investigations into the cause of the accident continue.
“It’s tragic,” New Hampshire State Police Capt. Chris Vetter told reporters during a late night news conference.
“I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a crash with as much loss of life.
“It’s tragic for those involved, tragic for the families, so we’re doing our job, we’re doing our work and our thoughts are with the people who were adversely affected by this.”
— CBS News (@CBSNews) June 22, 2019
Speaking with CBS News, Miranda Thompson, 21, of Manchester, recalled seeing a truck in flames on the side of the highway and six motorcycles.
“There was debris everywhere,” she said. “People were in the grass. There were people putting tourniquets on people, trying to make sure they didn’t move.”
Jerry Hamanne, co-owner of a nearby bed-and-breakfast where most of the motorcyclists were staying, said he and a doctor also staying at his inn went to the scene to help but some people were already dead.
“It was so devastating to see the bodies on the road,” Hamanne said.
“My God, I don’t want to see something like this again.”
Charlie St. Clair, executive director of Laconia Motorcycle Week Association, said the riders were mostly Marine veterans.
“This is staggering and it’s tragic beyond description,” St. Clair said.
“You have a bunch of people out for a ride enjoying one of the first nice days we had. To have this happen, it defies logic quite frankly.”