Ilana Gold, Jon Wardle
One person is dead after a vicious crash on route 44 in Norfolk tonight.
A 50-year-old Naugatuck man was killed and two people were injured after an SUV and a delivery truck collided head-on in the area of 444 Greenwoods Road West/Route 44 in Norfolk just before 3:30 p.m. on Monday.
Police at the scene said the driver of the 2004 Cadillac Escalade, identified as John Maida, of Naugatuck, was killed on impact when his SUV crossed the center lane and hit a delivery truck driven by Serguel Palatkin, 27, of Bristol, head-first.
Maida was pronounced dead at the scene, according to state police.
The passenger in Maida's SUV, Cynthia Corker-Cherry, 53, of the same address in Naugatuck, and Palatkin were taken to the hospital, one by LifeStar, and are expected to be all right, police said.
Corker-Cherry suffered a laceration and is in stable condition and Palatkin suffered a minor injuries, according to police.
Norfolk Fire Department spokesman Jon Barbagallo described the crash as "just complete devastation."
"The way it was sheared right open was pretty traumatic," Barbagallo said of the SUV, which was mangled beyond recognition. The driver's door was ripped off and stuck to the front of the truck.
Jim Kochiss, of Norfolk, witnessed the crash.
"You heard a big, huge bang and metal crunching," he said.
Route 44 reopened on the North Canaan line around 8 p.m. yesterday.
The crash remains under investigation.