ALTONA — A correction officer, six inmates and at least one other person were injured when a state van and a car collided on Devil’s Den Road at about 2:20 p.m. Monday.
Several emergency crews responded to what Clinton County Fire Control described on scanner calls as a multi-casualty incident near Ganienkeh High Stakes Territorial Bingo; all those injured were taken to CVPH Medical Center in Plattsburgh.
The van was thrown on its side by the force of the crash; the front end of the car was left mangled by the crash.
The inmates had been working at Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora and were returning to Altona Correctional Facility, said Linda Foglia, spokesperson for the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision.
Altona Correctional, at 555 Devil’s Den Road, is about a five-minute drive — a little more than 2 miles — from the bingo hall.
All on the van, including the correction officer behind the wheel, were injured and taken to the hospital, Foglia confirmed. She had no details on whether that van is equipped with seat belts or how the inmates were secured.
She deferred other questions about the accident to State Police.
At 3:10 p.m., two men in green jumpsuits lay on the ground awaiting transport by ambulance to the hospital; others injured in the accident had already been taken by rescue crews.
At least 15 correction officers surrounded the site of the crash as numerous rescue workers tended to the injured.
EMS ambulances responded from Altona, Morrisonville, Ellenburg Depot and West Chazy; other rescue departments, including Mooers, Rouses Point and Churubusco, were instructed to staff their ambulances in their stations in case of other crises in the northern part of the county. An ambulance from EMT of CVPH was canceled en route but stayed on standby.
Traffic was detoured from Devil’s Den Road through the parking lots of the bingo hall and gas station there.