Tanker explodes in Keene crash, killing 2 from Hinsdale

Saturday May 4, 2013

KEENE, N.H. -- A Hinsdale man and woman were killed in a two-vehicle crash on Route 12 in Keene, Friday morning.

Douglas Farr, Jr., 32, and Erin Breault, 35, were traveling south at about 10:30 a.m. in a 2011 Hyundai when the vehicle crossed the center line and collided with a fuel tanker truck near the Route 9 East ramp. The collision caused a massive explosion and black smoke could be scene billowing into the air. Farr was identified as the driver.

"It took approximately one hour for members of the Keene Fire Department, with the assistance of multiple other jurisdictions, to control and render the scene safe to approach," accord to the Keene Police Department.

Sections of Routes 9 and 12 were closed until late Friday night, as police investigated the crash and crews worked to removed the tanker truck. The fire also damaged power lines running over the highway.

The driver of the tanker -- 54-year-old Jeffrey Cloran of Becket, Mass. -- was transported to Cheshire Medical Center, treated for minor injuries and later released.

Police say the tanker -- owned by JP Noonan Transportation -- was fully loaded with about 5,000 gallons of petroleum when the crash occurred. After the collision, the tractor trailer caught fire, rupturing one of the trailer fuel cells.

When contacted Friday night, Keene police were unable to confirm if the driver of the Hyundai was the same Douglas M. Farr who was involved in a shooting incident in Chesterfield, last year. New Hampshire Assistant Attorney General Peter R. Hinckley, who is overseeing that case -- in which a shooting incident left 39-year-old Mark T. McAuley, dead, and 30-year-old (at the time) Douglas Farr injured -- told the Reformer last week that he could not comment on the investigation because it was still active.

Hinsdale Board of Selectmen chairman Mike Darcy, on Friday night, also said he was unsure if that Douglas Farr was one in the same.

"We’re sad and sorry for the families (affected by the crash)," Darcy said, "and wish them the best at this tragic time."

Poilice are continuing to investigate the crash and are asking anyone with information to call 603-357-9813.


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