A hayride accident in Mechanical Falls, Maine, has left one teen dead and 22 others injured according to the Maine State Fire Marshal’s office.
Authorities say a small jeep pulling a flatbed trailer missed a turn on a steep dirt road and jack-knifed. The jeep went off the road and the trailer hit a tree, sending riders tumbling to the ground. NECN reports that the teen killed in the accident was confirmed by the Fire Marshal’s office as a 17-year-old girl. Two others were in critical condition following the incident, including the driver and a teenage boy.
According to the venue, some of the injured were transported via Life Flight from the venue for medical treatment. WCVB reports that the Central Maine Medical Center reported 15 patients. St. Mary’s Hospital in Lewiston said it had seven patients, all in stable condition. One person was being treated at Maine Medical Center.
Harvest Hill Farms/Pumpkin Land, the operator of the hayride, posted the following message on its Facebook page around 10 pm Saturday night.
“Emergency crews are on-site now at our Gauntlet Night Ride as there was an accident with one of the wagons. We will keep you posted.”
Pumpkin Land issued a final statement Saturday night.
“Emergency crews are on site and Life Flight was called in to transport those needing urgent care. The accident occurred at the Gauntlet Haunted Night ride, a separate venue from Pumpkin Land, our daytime Family Fall venue. However Pumpkin Land will be closed Sunday while authorities investigate the accident. Our thoughts and prayers are with the injured.”
Emergency crews called the rollover a “mass-casualty incident.”An investigation will be completed by the Mechanic Falls Police Department and Maine State Police to determine what caused the crash. Mechanical failure or driver error are both possibilities. The sheriff said, “There are going to be numerous witnesses that we are going to have to interview and get detailed information, but that may take some time because we have numerous patients going to area hospitals.”
Scott Lansley, a Harvest Hill spokesperson, told NECN the two most serious injuries were sustained by employees. He also went on to say that the driver of the jeep in the accident was an experienced truck driver.
The Portland Fire Department posted the following message on Twitter on Saturday night.
“Thoughts and prayers with the victims, their families, and the emergency crews operating at a MCI in Mechanic Falls, ME”
Sadly this isn’t the first time a Halloweeen event has led to the death of an individual. Last year the Inquisitr reported that a girl in a skunk costume at a Halloween party was accidentally shot.
Harvest Hill Farms posted an update this morning informing patrons that they are not aware of any confirmed loss of life in the tragic event. However, all other media outlets are still stating a teenage girl has passed away. We will keep you posted as more information is made available.