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Cops: Wrong-Way Drunk Driver Causes Two Route 9 Crashes

"Fortunately those involved sustained minor or no injuries and were able to walk away from the potentially serious incident," Fire Chief Munson said.

Photo credit: Croton Fire Department
Photo credit: Croton Fire Department
Both state and local police responded to calls about a car heading southbound in the northbound lanes of Route 9 through Croton Friday night just before 7:45 p.m. 

When officials arrived they found a two-car crash near the Montrose exit on Route 9 with one car facing the wrong way, apparently from a head-on collision.

A 76-year-old Ossining man who reportedly had been going in the wrong direction in a 2014 Honda CRV crashed with an oncoming driver in a 1999 Nissan, who told state police handling the investigation that he was unable to avoid the car coming straight at him. 

Croton Fire Department Deputy Chief John Munson actually described more than one accident from the wrong-way incident: the head-on collision and then another more minor accident further north near the Sky View turn.

"Witnesses reported a vehicle came southbound in the northbound lanes, causing cars to veer off the roadway to avoid colliding - although a couple vehicles weren't as lucky. Fortunately those involved sustained minor or no injuries and were able to walk away from the potentially serious incident," Munson said. 

Croton Police Lt. John Nikitopolous said State Police were already at the scene when Croton officers arrived. State police had called the paramedics, but all involved refused medical attention, he said. 

State Police said the Honda ended up along the center median guard rail with driver's side damage; the second car was just north of it. 

When state police interviewed the driver, they said he "exhibited clues" that he was intoxicated. They brought him into headquarters where testing confirmed he was over the legal blood alcohol level. They charged him with the misdemeanor offenses of:
  • Driving while intoxicated 
  • and reckless endangerment. 
The man was released with a universal traffic ticket and an upcoming Croton court date. 

"Croton FD volunteers remained on scene with Croton Police and EMS for roughly 30 minutes until the vehicles were towed away," Munson said. 

Note: an arrest does not indicate a conviction.

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