RILEY TOWNSHIP, Maine — Two Rhode Island men were seriously injured late Friday morning when the all-terrain vehicles they were riding collided, Warden Cpl. John MacDonald said Friday afternoon in a news release.
The incident happened at 11 a.m. on a multiuse trail on Maine Public Reserve Land, he said.
MacDonald did not identify either man.
Med-Care Ambulance Chief Dean Milligan said Bethel Rescue sent two ambulances to the scene and Med-Care sent one ambulance. Because Bethel Rescue didn’t have a paramedic there, Milligan said Med-Care’s medic tended to the patient with the head wound and rode with the ambulance to a nearby landing zone.
They transferred the patient to a LifeFlight helicopter and he was flown to Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston.
Milligan said Med-Care’s intermediate-EMT rode in the other Bethel Rescue ambulance tending to the other injured man, who was taken to Rumford Hospital.
Newry firefighter Alan Fleet said the incident happened about a quarter mile past Twin Bridges, also called the Bull Branch Brook bridges, on the Coburn Field Road off Sunday River Road.
Fleet, who arrived at the scene ahead of Warden Norm Lewis, said both injured men were found on the Coburn Field Road, which is west of Sunday River Ski Resort in Newry.
Fleet said both men warmed up their ATVs and one went up the road, and then started coming back as the other was taking off up the road in the same direction.
“They see each other and they both swerved in the same direction, and then hit,” he said.
Fleet said he believes the man who went to Rumford Hospital had a shoulder injury.
Both men were wearing helmets, which Fleet said saved their lives.
“If they hadn’t have, we’d probably have had a dead body,” he said.
“The first one, his helmet was broken, so he probably had a good concussion of some sort. The Warden Service said it was a good thing they had helmets on.”
Newry firefighters set up a landing zone for LifeFlight about five miles away in Fleet’s field on Sunday River Road.
“That was the closest and easiest place,” he said.
MacDonald said the incident is under investigation and that he had no further information Friday night.
MacDonald said acting Warden Sgt. Dave Chabot and Lewis were also assisted by the Oxford County Sheriff’s Office.
See more from the Sun Journal at sunjournal.com.