SHIRLEY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Multiple people are dead, including a former aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, following a multi-car accident on the Long Island Expressway in Shirley on Sunday morning.
Suffolk County Police said four people are dead, including a 10-year-old, following an accident that involved several cars around 10 a.m. in the westbound lane near Exit 68. Cuomo said in a statement that 29-year-old Scott Martella, who served in his administration for more than four years, died in the accident.
“Scott was a dedicated, beloved public servant who worked day in and day out to improve the lives of his fellow New Yorkers. Scott was always full of big ideas to help solve the toughest challenges of the day, and he was deeply respected for his strong work ethic, candor and fighting spirit. Long Island is a better place today because of his service and dedication to the community,” Cuomo said in a statement.
Martella was communications director for Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, who said his spokesman “positively impacted” thousands of lives.
“Scott dedicated his all too brief life to public service and to helping others. He is known across Long Island as a leader and a great man,” Bellone said in a statement.
Martella’s fiancé, 29-year-old Shelbi Thurau, sustained non-life-threatening injuries in the crash. The two were supposed to get married in April 2017.
Police said Carmelo Pinales was traveling eastbound in his Subaru Outback when his vehicle crossed over the grassy median, went airborne and struck 73-year-old Marvin Tenzer’s BMW and Martella’s Honda that were traveling westbound.The other victims have been identified as 26-year-old Carmelo Pinales, his sister, 27-year-old Patricia Pinales, and his 10-year-old son Christopher Pinales.
Tenzer and his three passengers were transported to local hospitals for non-life-threatening injuries.
Winnifer Garcia, 21, and Patricia Pinales’ 3-year-old daughter were also transported to local hospitals for non-life-threatening injuries.
Patricia Pinales uploaded a video to Snapchat about 15 minutes before she was killed, according to her relatives.
Web Extra: See the Snapchat video:
WLNY’s Hazel Sanchez reported emergency responders said it was one of the worst accidents they have ever seen.
Detectives are investigating reports the driver of the Subaru was traveling at a high rate of speed.
1010 WINS reports the westbound LIE has re-opened after being closed for several hours.