On one of the few seasonably cold nights of the winter, two cars and a box truck collided on Route 206 and Cooper Lane in Chester causing a road closure on the highway just before 6 p.m. on Feb. 26.
Long Valley resident Daniel Recca was traveling north on route 206 when he crossed his 1998 BMW into the southbound lane and collided with a Hino box truck and a 2011 GMC Acadia, police said.
The truck was being driven by Max Matamos, age 40, of New Brunswick and the Acadia by 42-year-old Gina DiFazio from Chester Township. Matamos and his two passengers were transported to Morristown Memorial Hospital by the Chester First Aid Squad for minor injuries while DiFazio was uninjured in the crash.
Recca, on the other hand, had to be extracted from the vehicle.
"One of the drivers was flown out by helicopter for medical treatment.," said Sgt. Ed Noonan of the Chester Township Police Department. According to police, Atlantic Air One medical helicopter transported Recca to Morristown Memorial Hospital for injuries he sustained in the crash.
The road was re-opened to all traffic at 9:32 p.m., but work in the area continued.
Noonan confirmed one of the vehicles was a box truck and despite the fuel spill, there was no blaze as first reported. "There was no fire."
The scene was a swarm of activity as members of the Chester Township Fire Department worked with Assisting at the scene were Chester Borough Police, Morris County Sheriff’s Department CIS and HazMat Unit, and the NJ DOT Traffic Diversion Unit to clean the flammable material, and secure the crime scene.
Haloed in red and blue lights, a string of tractor trailers were forced to k-turn to clear the bottlebeck.
Route 206 was closed for approximately three and a half hours for rescue operations and the crash investigation, with traffic detoured onto local roads. The crash is still under investigation by Patrolman Brian Gill, Det. Anthony DaCunza, and the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office.