Press-Republican

Police, Fire, Courts

June 5, 2014

Police: Car crossed into wrong lane

ALTONA — Darlene A. Manor is remembered as soft-spoken but with a kindness that often spoke louder than words. 

The Mooers Forks woman died on Tuesday afternoon after her car crossed the center line on Military Turnpike and was hit head-on by a UniFirst Corporation box truck.

State Police didn’t know why the Mooers Forks woman’s 2000 Honda Civic left its lane just south of the turnpike/Route 190 intersection with Stark and Rabideau roads at about 2:38 p.m.

Philip E. Vannortwick Jr., 29, of Altona was behind the wheel of the UniFirst truck. 

The UniFirst branch in Keeseville confirmed that the truck was part of the company’s fleet but declined to comment on the accident.  

TRUCK DRIVER, DAUGHTER INJURED

Vannortwick was taken by ambulance to CVPH Medical Center in Plattsburgh; he had been discharged by Wednesday afternoon.

Darlene’s daughter, Katherine M. Manor, 20, was a passenger in the Honda, and she was also brought to the hospital.

It was expected she would be released soon, a patient care coordinator said on Wednesday afternoon.

Neither had life-threatening injuries, police said.

Darlene also leaves a son, Alex.

Darlene was driving eastward on the turnpike, and Vannortwick was headed westward when their vehicles collided on the bridge over the Great Chazy River, the release said.

The box truck careened against the guide rail on the east side of the bridge, plunging partly through before coming to rest on its side and hanging over the river.

A stretch of Military Turnpike was shut down for hours, with traffic detoured around it.

Clinton County Coroner David F. Donah authorized the removal of Darlene’s body, which was taken to CVPH by Walker Funeral Home.

He said Wednesday that her cause of death was “blunt force trauma due to a motor vehicle accident.” 

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