CONTACT:
Major Tim Acerno: 603-271-3128
Jane Vachon: 603-271-3211
January 16, 2009


Two New Hampshire Snowmobile Crashes Overnight

CONCORD, N.H. -- Two late-night snowmobile crashes with serious consequences in New Hampshire underscore the need for using caution and understanding your limits when operating snow machines.

One incident occurred in Henniker, where Corey Slosek, age 20, a Henniker resident, crashed into a tree on the northeastern shoreline of Upper Pond.  Friends he was staying with at a nearby campground went looking for him after he did not return from a short solo snowmobile ride.  They found him at the crash site and brought him back to the campground and called 911 at about 1:50 a.m. on Friday, January 16.  Slosek was riding alone and had not been wearing a helmet or eye protection. He was treated for head trauma and hypothermia by Henniker and Hopkinton rescue personnel and immediately transported to the Henniker Fire Department for medical flight to Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center aboard the DHART helicopter.  Slosek is currently being treated in the Intensive Care Unit at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center. New Hampshire Fish and Game Department Conservation Officers were called to the scene to investigate the crash.  Initial findings indicate that speed may have been a factor. The incident remains under investigation.

In a separate incident, William Brown, age 42, of Loudon, crashed his snowmobile into a tree after crossing a field in Barnstead, N.H., around midnight on Thursday, January 15, sustaining serious injuries.  He was riding with three friends, each on their own machine, when the crash occurred.  The friends called 911 and Barnstead Police and N.H. Fish and Game Conservation Officers responded to the scene. Barnstead Fire and Rescue transported Brown to Concord Hospital and he was later transferred to Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center.  Brown was wearing a helmet and eye protection at the time of the crash.  Preliminary investigations indicate that speed was one of the contributing factors.  The incident remains under investigation, pending vehicle inspection.

"Winter conditions are affording the opportunity to snowmobile throughout the state, but these incidents are stark reminders that this activity can be dangerous if you don't ride responsibly," said Major Tim Acerno, coordinator of Fish and Game's Off-Highway Recreational Vehicle (OHRV) Safety Program.  "Be smart.  Don't ride alone.  Remember that visibility and speed will affect your ability to control the machine.  Always wear a helmet, and dress appropriately for the weather, especially with the sub-zero temperatures we're experiencing right now."

Check trail conditions before you head out at the N.H. Bureau of Trails website at www.nhtrails.org.  You can also call the N.H. Snowmobile Association hotline for a trail report -- updated twice a week -- at (603) 740-5050 or visit their website, www.nhsa.com.

Free snowmobile safety classes are available around New Hampshire; a list is available at www.Ride.NH.gov/OHRV/ohrv.htm.  These courses will only be offered for a few more weeks, so sign up soon if you want to take one this season.
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For more tips on safe snowmobile operation, visit www.Ride.NH.gov/OHRV/snowmobile_safety.html.

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