Two were taken to the hospital for injuries, including a Lacey Township Special Officer, following two motor vehicle accidents at the intersection of Route 9 and Lakeside Drive South in Forked River early this morning, Patrolman George Resetar said in a news release.
Police responded to a three-car collision at approximately 5:48 a.m., he said. Preliminary investigation revealed that a 2011 Subaru driven by Justin Gartley, 26, of Barnegat was traveling south on Route 9 when it left the lane and struck two vehicles traveling north.
A 2003 Hyundai driven by Robin Doyle, 40, of Barnegat and a 1997 Ford driven by Gregory Doscher Jr., 23, of Barnegat were struck. Doyle and Doscher received minor injuries, Resetar said.
Gartley was extricated from his vehicle by the Forked River Fire Department and flown to Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune with serious injuries, he said. He is currently listed in stable condition, said Maureen Gillespie, spokesperson for the hospital.
Witnesses to the aftermath of the accident scene said they saw a white pickup truck resting inside the passenger side of a red sedan, and a white SUV wrapped around a pole in front of Odd-It Tees, 405 S. Main Street.
Following the initial accident, Route 9 was closed to traffic and Special Officer Ken Martin, 65, of Forked River was directing traffic at the intersection of Route 9 and Lakeside Drive South when he was struck by a vehicle driven by Kirsten Cicardo, 18, of Forked River, Resetar said.
Cicardo was turning north on Route 9 from Lakeside Drive South at approximately 6:54 a.m. when she struck Martin, who was in the southbound lane on Route 9, just in front of the stop line, he said. Martin was dressed in his uniform, safety vest and traffic gloves.
Martin was transported to Community Medical Center in Toms River for head and lower extremity injuries. He was released from the hospital after being treated, Resetar said.
"The officer is O.K.," a source at the scene said
Route 9 opened to traffic at approximately 10 a.m.
The cars were towed from the scene at about 9:45 a.m.
Members of the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department Criminal Investigations Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office and Lacey EMS responded to both accidents.
Patrolman Jeffrey Slota and the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department Criminal Investigation Unit are investigating the first accident.
Anyone with further information regarding the secondary accident is asked to contact Resetar at 609-693-6636, ext. 2590.
Please return to Patch for any additional updates.