7-Car Crash Turns Chestnut Street Into Demolition Derby

Four are hurt in chain-reaction accident in Upper Milford, police say.

Saturday was an insurance agent's nightmare at an Upper Milford Township intersection.

In a blink of an eye, seven vehicles collided, leaving at least four injured and plenty of twisted metal and broken plastic.

Events didn't do a whole lot of good either for the vehicle owners or a weary state trooper who had to try to keep it all straight for his report.

Trouble began about 4:38 p.m. at Chestnut Street and Buckeye Road. Five vehicles were southbound on Chestnut and were stopped or stopping for a red traffic signal at Buckeye Road as a car driven by Frederick C. Daniel, 69, of Emmaus approached from behind, .

For an unknown reason, Daniel began passing the line of stopped vehicles, police said, and lost control. Daniel's car first hit the driver's side front end of the car in front of him, driven by Nancy E. Devine, 52, of Whitehall Township. His car continued on and struck the vehicle of Errol R. Nothstein, 70, of Emmaus, which was next in line. Daniel's car next hit that of George H. Uhl, 68, of Emmaus.

After striking the third vehicle, Daniel's Corvette came to rest with its rear end in the northbound lane of Chestnut Street, police said. At this point, a vehicle driven by Brandon R. Kahler, 18, of Macungie came through the intersection after pulling out from Buckeye Road and drove into the path of Daniel's vehicle stopped in the northbound lane. Kahler's vehicle pushed Daniel's again into Uhl's, which now hit a truck driven by Clayton H. Simanton, 46, of Bethlehem. That vehicle was pushed into the one driven by Emily S. MacPherson, 35, of Glenmoore, Chester County.

The trooper did a good job of detailing in his report how and where each vehicle came to rest. For simplicity's sake, Chestnut Street looked like a salvage yard with a hodge-podge of vehicles strewn from shoulder to shoulder. In the end, police said, three vehicles were disabled and four received minor damage. Kahler's vehicle, one of those disable, ended up in a ditch and was pushed into a utility pole.

Police reported that four victims received an unknown extent of injuries and were transported to hospitals. Three were drivers Daniels, Uhl and Kahler. One passenger, Sandra K. Uhl, 68, of Emmaus, also was transported to a hospital.

Police said Daniel was charged with failing to drive on the proper side of the road.


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