INDIAN LAKE - Two snowmobilers were killed in a head-on collision on Indian Lake near Timberlock Camp Saturday, March 2: Thomas R. Dykstra, 59, Suffern, and Paul A. Prill IV, 51, Schenectady.
State Police say Dykstra was operating his 2009 Arctic Cat snowmobile on the frozen lake in a northerly direction when he entered the path of Prill’s 2002 Polaris, which was traveling in a southerly direction. A front-end collision ensued and both men were ejected from their respective snowmobiles.
The accident was reported to the State Police at 6:44 p.m.
Dykstra and Prill IV were transported to Nathan Littauer Hospital in Gloversville, where Hamilton County Coroner Virginia Jennings pronounced both men deceased.
Dr. Jung Lee performed autopsies Sunday, finding both men died of accidental severe blunt force trauma.
State Police suspect alcohol was a contributing factor. The cause of the accident is under investigation.
The son of one of the victims, Kyle Prill, posted information on www.ilsnow.com. He wrote that he, his wife and his father were traveling together at between 40 and 50 mph “and watched these people coming at us from a long ways [off].
“As they approached one rider broke formation and swerved to our right side. We had sleds coming on both sides now and at the last second the rider swerved back … missed me by inches and my wife by feet and struck my father…”
He wrote, “When they hit it sounded like a cannon going off, both sleds and riders [became] airborne and the sleds exploded into flames when they landed.”
Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office assisted the State Police with the investigation. Indian Lake Marina on Lake Shore Road was used as the staging area.
According to Darrin Harr, who owns ilsnow.com, the snowmobiler who caused the accident had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.13 percent. DWI is charged at .08 percent and above.
Forest rangers, Indian Lake Volunteer Fire Department and both Indian Lake ambulances also responded.
A second fatal snowmobiling accident Saturday claimed the life of Scott Streeter, 47, of Herkimer County. He was riding in the Town of Ohio, State Police say, when he left a trail and was thrown from his sled, hitting a tree. He was pronounced dead at the scene.