WILSON, N.Y. (WIVB) - There are more questions than answers as investigators look into a three-vehicle crash that happened on Wilson-Burt Road in the Town of Wilson. Two people were killed in the accident, and the only survivor wasn't able to shed any light on what caused the crash.
Skid marks, tire tracks and these wrecks are all investigators have, to help them piece together how this fatal accident happened Wednesday afternoon, in Niagara County.
PHOTO GALLERY | More photos from the deadly crash on Wilson-Burt Road
Capt. Patrick Weidel of the Niagara County Sheriff's Office said, "Unfortunately, at about 4 o'clock, there was a three-vehicle accident here on Wilson-Burt Road, right near Beebe Road. Two people passed away as a result of the accident."
Ronald Zauner, 69, from Wilson died at the scene, while 58-year-old Cathy World, also from Wilson, passed away at the hospital. The third driver, 58-year-old Frederick Lederhouse from Ransomville, suffered non-life threatening injuries and was taken to Eastern Niagara Hospital in Newfane, but he couldn't tell investigators much.
"Unfortunately, we don't have any witnesses to the accident. The one person that's being treated is not clear, as to the situation that was occurring prior to the accident. It is believed at least two of the vehicles were headed east, and potentially one was headed west. But that's all pending the investigation," Capt. Weidel said.
The road has no sharp curves or irregularities that would make it difficult to see. There was still plenty of daylight, at the time of the crash.
And although wet snow was moving across the area, Wilson did not experience the accumulation or dramatically lowered visibilities that some other parts of Western New York did.
Capt. Weidel said, "I don't believe the weather played a factor in this. Our accident investigation unit is still collecting data, taking pictures, photographing the scene. Things like that will help us determine what the cause of the crash was."
As dusk began to fall, Niagara County's accident reconstructionists still had a long night ahead of them. It took crews around five hours to clear the scene.
"We'll continue to look through the evidence that we've gathered, and then come up with a determination as to whether or not anything criminal did occur. And if it did, then we'll move forward with that," Capt. Weidel explained.
Deputies, meanwhile, had the unenviable task of notifying the victims' families.
Capt. Weidel said, "Horrible tragedy. Two lives have been lost."
No names have been released. Authorities say drugs or alcohol do not appear to be involved in the crash.
Anyone who saw the crash or the vehicles involved just prior is encouraged to get in touch with the Niagara County Sheriff's Office at 438-3393.
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