Cumberland Times-News

Police Log

May 25, 2013

Four injured, one flown to hospital in Bedford crash - 05/26

CUMBERLAND — BEDFORD, Pa. — Four people were injured with one  taken to the Altoona Regional Hospital after a Dodge Viper traveling at a high rate of speed collided with a Chevrolet Silverado on state Route 36 Friday evening, according to the Pennsylvania State Police.

The accident occurred between Northern Bedford High School and Loysburg at about 6:30 p.m.

Eric L. Ritchey, 46, of Woodbury, the driver of the Dodge Viper V10 Supercharger, apparently lost control while heading north on Route 36 and struck the 1999 Chevrolet Silverado driven by Justin M. Thomas, 28, of Hopewell, who was traveling southbound. The impact from the collision pushed the Silverado 35 feet off the road where he landed in a ditch.

Ritchey was flown via helicopter, while a passenger in the Viper, Brandon J. Sollenberger of New Enterprise, was taken to the Altoona Regional Trauma Center with serious injuries, according to police.

Thomas and Joey L. Haga of Hopewell, a passenger in the Silverado, were taken to the University of Pennsylvania Medical Center Bedford for injuries.

Witnesses said the Viper had been seen in the area just prior to the accident traveling at a high rate of speed and doing burnouts, according to police.

One witness said the Viper had to do an evasive maneuver to avoid striking a bread truck at the intersection of Route 36 and Hickory Bottom Road.

Responding to the scene was Trooper Matthew J. Bonin. An investigation is ongoing, according to police.

Law enforcement officials asked to extend a special thanks to the Southern Cove Fire Department and EMS who had 12 volunteers on the scene.

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