North Bergen, N.J. — At least three people were dead following a devastating crash in Hudson County early Thursday morning.
The tragedy happened at about 5:30 o’clock in the morning along R- 3 where I- 495 in N Bergen joins the highway on the way to the Lincoln Tunnel.
Officials identified two fatalities as Miguel Barreto, Jr., age 34, resident of Leominster, Mass. and Margarita Santiago, age 32, residing in Passaic . Another man awaiting identification has also been killed. Authorities believed that he also comes from Massachusetts.
Spokesperson, Mike Makarski from Hudson County Sheriff’s Office reported that after the vehicle hit the guardrail, it was airborne and alighted sideways on the driver’s-side door. After it landed, the car continued moving at approximately 150 feet, where it finally crashed on a light pole.
The impact of the ill-fated Mercedes, which bore a Massachusetts plate, was so severe that the vehicle was divided into three pieces.
People who witnessed the aftermath of the scenario that law enforcement processed were stunned and could hardly believed it happened.
Mike Letourneaut, a Union City resident, said it was mind blowing to see a car split in three and it reminded him of a scene in a war movie.
Mondo Pagnozzi, Lyndhurst resident, pointed at the car hanging up in the tree, the trunk was at the other side, the engine in another place and the remaining part was wrapped around the pole.
Due to the accident, police decided to close R- 3 eastbound for hours. At one area, they backed up traffic all the way R-21 in Clifton.
The accident is being investigated from evidences uncovered.
Makarski said that based on prelim reports, they believed that the main factor for the crash was speed.
Makarski said that the white Mercedes station wagon must have been running at top speed that the driver lost control. It crashed on the steel guard rail where the R-3 going east joins Route 495. The impact airlifted the vehicle. Authorities believe speed was a factor in the crash.
The minivan alighted on the driver’s side door and continued sliding more than 153 feet before crashed on a light pole, at the vehicle seemed to explode in multiple pieces.
R-3 was closed for more than two hours as officials investigated the crash. Traffic was detoured to Routes 1&9 and NJ Turnpike extension 80.
Authorities recalled that this deadly accident is just a replication of a crash exactly on the same spot less than a year ago. Three people died and two others injured when a Dodge 2008 Charger swerved off R- 3 going east near interchange 495.
Hudson County Sheriff Frank Schillari said that they believed the driver was under the influence of alcohol. Fatalities were identified as: Margarita Santiago, age 32, residing in Passaic, Miguel Barreto Jr., and age 34 and residing in of Leominster, Mass. There was another who was pronounced dead at the scene but was not yet Id.
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Source: New York CBS Local Com