News of Otsego County


2 Officers, Driver Save Injured Hawk On I-81

County Sheriff’s Sgt. Michael Stalter, top left, a licensed falconer, and DEC Officer Tim Card hold up a Red Tail hawk, since nicknamed Lucky, they rescued Tuesday from Interstate 81.  Deputy Frank Koren Jr., inset right, the first officer who responded to the scene, kept his new buddy warm in a Christmas sweater.  According to sheriff’s deputies, driver Maureen Richter saw the injured bird while traveling on I-88 in the Town of Oneonta and alerted police. The hawk was then transported to Charlie and Dorie Koop’s in Pittsfield for rehabilitation.   Arriving at the scene, Sergeant Stalter said the hawk appeared disoriented.  The Koops, he said, will “watch and monitor” Lucky, but expect to release it back into the wild in the next few days.

Driver Hits Stopped Trooper Car On I-88

Trooper, Adults, Child Hurt In 3-Car Crash

Driver Slams Into

Police SUV On I-88

Troopers said the car at left ran into the unmarked state police SUV at right, pushing the SUV into the car in front of it.  The accident occurred in the eastbound lane of I-88 Monday evening.

SCHENEVUS – A state trooper, two adults and a child were hospitalized after a Richmondville woman, 32, failed to move over on Interstate 88, and smashed into the back of a stopped state police SUV hard enough to drive it into a third car that had been pulled over for a traffic stop, police report.

The trooper was from the Oneonta Barracks, Troop C, and the SUV’s lights were flashing when the accident occurred, police said.  The third car was pushed back into the eastbound lane.

Rig Driver Ejected In 1st Fatal XNG Crash

Rig Driver Ejected In

1st Fatal XNG Crash

Gas Leaks, 80 Homes Evacuated Near I-88

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to

The wreckage of an XNG truck lines strewn along I-88 west of Binghamton after it crashed at 1 a.m. Monday, Sept. 23, as the driver, who died in the crash, swerved to avoid a deer. (Photo courtesy Broome County Sheriff’s Department)

For Otsego 2000 President Nicole Dillingham, a key player in shifting gas-carrying XNG trucks out of Otsego County, said the truck crash west if Binghamton that killed a 52-year-old driver was a predictable tragedy.

This was the first fatal accident involving an XNG truck since the “virtual pipeline” emerged after state regulators blocked the proposed Constitution Pipeline in 2016.

“It’s very sad,” Dillingham said. “But those trucks were never fully tested, they’re prone to roll-overs and, if the conditions were right, they could explode.”

At 1 a.m. on Monday, Sept. 23, Broome County Sheriff’s deputies were called to the scene of a tractor-trailer accident on Interstate 88 eastbound at Exit 2 in the Town of Fenton.

5 Homes EvacuatedAfter Gas-Bearing RigFlips On Interstate 88


5 Homes Evacuated

After Gas-Bearing Rig

Flips On Interstate 88

Tractor-Trailer Not XNG’s, Company Says

This compressed natural gas rig toppled off I-88 yesterday morning north of Cobleskill.   The owner of the shipment was not identified. (State Police photo)

CENTRAL BRIDGE – A tractor-trailer carrying compressed natural gas overturned Sunday morning on Interstate 88, shutting the highway and resulting in the precautionary evacuation of five homes, the Schenectady Gazette is reporting this morning.

The rig was not owned by XNG, that company that had been routing trucks through Otsego County, according to company Vice President Matt Smith.  Since last fall, most of those trucks have been rerouted into Chenango County.


Truck Overturns On I-88 Near Sidney

Truck Overturns

On I-88 Near Sidney

Unadilla and Wells Bridge firefighters clear boxes of spilled food and drinks away from the scene of a tractor-trailer rollover last night in Unadilla. (Photo courtesy Wells Bridge Fire Department)

SIDNEY – I-88 is open again following a tractor-trailer accident that left the truck driver injured and fuel and cargo scattered on the roadside.

James E. Witt, 40, Scio was traveling eastbound on I-88 in Sidney when he traveled off the southern shoulder and traveled approximately 500 feet before striking earth embankment and overturning on its side. Unadilla and Wells Bridge Fire Departments were dispatched to the scene at 5:23 p.m. and the Witt was transported to Wilson Hospital complaining of head and rib pain.

Anti-Faso Billboard Erected Over I-88

Anti-Faso Billboard

Erected Over I-88

County Rep. Adrienne Martini, D-City of Oneonta, snapped a photo of this I-88 billboard, just outside of Oneonta, which calls Congressman John Faso, R-19, “No-Show Faso” for his failure to host town halls or meet with constituents. The billboard was paid for by Mad Dog PAC, a super-PAC dedicated to putting up billboards across the country on a variety of issues, including gun control, impeachment and flipping the House and Senate towards Democratic and progressive candidates.  The PAC is run by Claude Taylor, a former staffer in the Clinton White House.
Double Homicide Suspect In Custody After I-88 Crash

Double-Slaying Suspect Taken

Into Custody After I-88 Crash

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to

SCHOHARIE – The suspect in last night’s double homicide in Laurens was taken into custody following a crash on I-88 in Schoharie, according to Sheriff Tony Desmond.

According to Desmond, sheriff’s deputies received a “Be On The Lookout” alert for a red Chevy Colorado pickup truck from the Otsego County Sheriff’s department. Deputies stationed near Richmondville saw a truck matching the description headed eastbound on I-88 and began to follow. After confirming the license plate matched the one in the alert, deputies allegedly attempted to pull over the suspect, who then sped up and a chase ensued.

Car Hits Tractor Trailer; I-88 Closed Between Exit 12/13

Car Strikes Tractor-Trailer;

I-88 Shut Between Exit 12/13

A tractor trailer caught on fire after an accident between I-88 Exits 12/13 in Oneonta.
A tractor trailer caught on fire after an accident between I-88 Exits 12/13 in Oneonta.
The car involved in the accident swerved to avoid hitting a deer, according to State Police
The car involved in the accident swerved to avoid hitting a deer, according to State Police

ONEONTA – A car swerved to miss hitting a dead deer and ended up hitting a tractor-trailer in an accident on I-88 earlier this morning. Hopefully, they knew the difference between Comprehensive vs Third Party Insurance and picked what was right for their situation. I’ve heard that has some useful information on the topic for those interested.

With the eastbound lane of I-88 near Oneonta closed for construction, the westbound lane has been split for traffic.

According to state police, a car driving westbound swerved to avoid hitting a deer carcass in the middle of the road, but over-corrected and drove into the eastbound lane. The car struck the tractor-trailer behind the cab, starting a fire that consumed the entire truck.

Man Jumps From I-88 Overpass

Man Jumps From I-88 Overpass,

Blocking Traffic For 45 Minutes

ONEONTA – A 24-year-old man was airlifted to Wilson Hospital in Johnson City after jumping off the Exit 16 overpass onto I-88 last night.

The victim was airlifted by Lifenet to Wilson Hospital, where he is being treated for internal injuries.

I-88 was closed for approximately 45 minutes following the incident at 8:15 p.m., which State Police believe to be an attempted suicide.

If you are considering suicide, please call

The National Suicide Hotline, 1-800-273-8255

Worcester I-88 Rest Stop To Reopen

Worcester I-88 Rest Stop To Reopen

088iny-150WORCESTER – State Sen. Jim Seward, R-Milford, will hold a  press conference at noon Thursday to announce the long-closed rest stop on I-88 near here will reopen.

The senator will be joined by state Department of Transportation officials and local leaders to officially reopen the fully rehabilitated rest stop closed in 2010.

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