A single-vehicle crash on Route 312 claimed two lives Friday afternoon, police say.
According to a release from the , the accident occurred around 1:30 p.m., when the four-door sedan struck a tree. Officials say Fishkill resident Merrill H. Spaeth, 66, was driving the car, in which her 92-year-old mother, Southeast resident Marion S. Hunting, was a passenger.
Both were pronounced dead at Putnam Hospital Center after being transported there by (BFD) ambulances. Police initially withheld the names of the victims as they notified family members.
Authorities from the Sheriff's Office Accident Reconstruction Team are still determining the cause of the accident, but police say "Preliminary investigation reveals that the car was traveling westbound on Route 312, when it drove off the right shoulder of the roadway, colliding with a tree."
"Sheriff’s deputies responded to a 911 dispatch of a serious personal injury auto crash at Route 312 in the Town of Southeast," the release states. "Upon arrival, Deputy William Quick observed a four-door sedan that had crashed into a tree and both the driver and a passenger in an unresponsive state."
According to this report on LoHud.com, written by Terence Corcoran, the accident occurred near Nancy Lane, as the vehicle headed west. Corcoran writes that the women were both wearing seat belts, and that a witness told police it did not look like Spaeth was speeding.
In addition to responders from the Sheriff's Office and BFD, officials from the and TransCare Paramedics arrived at the scene. They detoured traffic around the accident for roughly two and a half hours.