FARMERSVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB) — Four children ages  6, 8, 10 and 13 were rushed to the hospital Monday afternoon after the horse-drawn buggy, operated by one of the children, was hit by a pick up truck.

New York State Police say the buggy ran a stop sign at the intersection of County Route 80 and Rogers Road in Farmersville.  

“The operator of the pick up truck, once hitting the vehicle, did get out all the children that were ejected,” said James O’Callaghan, public information officer NYS Police Troop A. “He did provide aid for them, troopers were close by and medical staff were able to get there quickly. We did use mercy flight for one of the children.”

Judson Reid from the Cornell University Cooperative Extension frequently works with families in the Amish and Mennonite communities.  He says, when driving through these communities, remember that not all buggies look alike, and knowing that can help prevent accidents.

“So, in certain parts of the state, you may find buggies that are only lit with a kerosene lantern and then in other parts of the state there may be LED lights that are flashing regularly on a buggy,” Reid said. “So, it’s going to vary community by community.”  

Reid says other common mistakes drivers make include distracted driving, swerving outside of lanes and failing to look for slow moving vehicles when driving over hills or rounding bends.

Reid says the populations of Amish and Mennonite communities have been increasing over the past few years. 

“What attracts these populations to New York State is the availability of farmland. We have abundant farmland here that’s reasonably priced compared to some of the states that they’re coming from,” Reid said. “In states like Ohio and Pennsylvania those populations have very dense settlements and there’s less farmland available. New York State still has abundant farmland available for them.”