Delaware State Police

Troopers Investigating Fatal Motor Vehicle Crash- Update

Presented by Public Information Officer, Master Corporal Jeffrey R. Hale

Elsmere- The Delaware State Police Collision Reconstruction Unit is continuing to investigate a fatal motor vehicle crash that has claimed the life of a Newark man that occurred early this afternoon.

The investigation thus far has determined that the crash happened at approximately 12:28 p.m. this afternoon, Wednesday, February 15, 2017, as a 68-year-old Newark, DE man was operating a 2014 Volkswagen Jetta and for an unknown reason was traveling  in a southbound direction on the left hand shoulder of northbound DE Rt. 141 (Basin Road) just south of DE Rt. 2 (Kirkwood Highway), Elsmere. The operator of the Jetta then swerved his vehicle into the northbound left hand lane of Rt. 141 directly into the path of a 2011 Ford F-350, which was being operated by Jonathon Amato, 44, of Felton, DE. The left front of the Jetta then struck the left front of the F-350. Following the impact, the Jetta rotated counter-clockwise and traveled in a southwesterly direction. The front of the Volkswagen then struck the guard rail separating the northbound and southbound sides of DE Rt. 141 where it then came to rest. The Ford F-350 traveled a short distance in a northeasterly direction and entered into the path of a 2014 Chevrolet Silverado, which was traveling in the right hand northbound lane of the highway and which was being operated by John Wellons, 42, of Montchanin, DE. Both vehicles then came to rest just north of the crash scene.

The operator of the Volkswagen was not properly restrained at the time of the crash and was pronounced dead at the scene. His name is being withheld pending the notification of his next of kin. It is unknown if alcohol or drug us on the part of the victim was a contributing factor in this crash, however, excessive speed on the part of the victim does appear to be a factor.

Jonathon Amato was properly restrained at the time of the crash. He sustained minor injuries and refused medical treatment at the scene. John Wellons was also properly restrained at the time of the crash and was not injured.

All of the northbound lanes of DE Rt. 141 were closed for approximately 3 hours and traffic was diverted onto Centerville Road as the crash was investigated and cleared.

This crash remains under investigation by the Delaware State Police.

Released: 021517 1955

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