Conservation Officer Levi Frye
October 18, 2021
Berlin, NH – On Saturday, October 16, 2021 at approximately 4:15 p.m., NH Fish and Game was notified of a single-vehicle rental UTV rollover on the Yamaha Connector Trail in Berlin, just outside of Jericho Mountain State Park.
A Conservation Officer, Berlin Police, Fire and EMS, and a Coos County Deputy Sheriff responded to the scene to assist the patient, identified as Greg Cunningham, 23, of Framingham, Massachusetts. Cunningham and his girlfriend had rented the machine from Northeast ATV and Snowmobile Rentals in Gorham only hours before the rollover occurred.
Other operators came upon the machine laying on its side in the trail. They flipped it over onto its wheels, moved it off the trail and administered first aid to Cunningham prior to emergency personnel arriving on scene.
The passenger of Cunningham’s UTV stated that while coming around a corner in the trail, she believes that the machine’s right tire hit a large rock on the trail, which caused the machine to begin to flip. This, paired with Cunningham’s relative inexperience with UTV operation, caused the machine to fall onto its side, which trapped Cunningham’s arm between the machine and the ground. A subsequent investigation of the scene confirmed the witness’s statement.
A 911 call was made and an emergency response was initiated. Cunningham was transported by the Berlin Fire Department’s rescue UTV to a Berlin Ambulance. Due to the nature of Cunningham’s injuries, a call to the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Advanced Response Team (DHART) helicopter was made so Cunningham could be brought to a serious trauma center.
The DHART helicopter met Cunningham and the Berlin Ambulance at the landing pad at Androscoggin Valley Hospital in Berlin and subsequently transported him to Tufts Medical Center in Boston for treatment of his injuries.
Officials believe that operator inexperience, paired with trail conditions, are the primary factors leading to this incident. It is not believed that alcohol or drug intoxication are factors in this rollover.
NH Fish and Game would like to remind OHRV operators to always operate within their limits and those of the trail conditions. The bumps, rocks, mud and ruts in OHRV trails that make this activity so enjoyable, can overwhelm inexperienced operators very easily, even at low speeds.