SPARTA, NJ-A section of Sparta Avenue remains closed today to allow for the continued investigation into a serious motor vehicle accident late Friday evening that seriously injured a mother and her eight-year-old son. The accident occurred on Sparta Avenue less than a ¼ of a mile east of the Andover Township border.
Preliminary investigation indicates that at 10:42 p.m. a 2012 Ford Focus operated by 26-year-old Anna K. Phillips of Rutherford was traveling with her young son west on Sparta Avenue. For reasons undetermined at this time, she lost control of the vehicle.
The vehicle swerved to the right striking and taking down two utility poles, which fell blocking both lanes of travel. The vehicle overturned, slamming into a tree inverted and coming to a rest on a 45 degree angle with the nose of the car imbedded in the ground. The victims, who were both wearing seatbelts, were entrapped, suspended upside down in their seats.
Andover Township Police Officer George Loudis and Sparta Officer Daniel Elig was able cut the boy loose and carry him away from the wreck. He was then turned over to paramedics. Sparta Fire Department members utilizing the Jaws of Life successfully extricated the mother. They were both transported by the Sparta First Aid Squad and Paramedics from St. Claires Sussex to the Mohawk Avenue where they were flow in separate helicopters to the Morristown Medical Center. Their conditions are unknown at this time.
Officer Daniel Elig is leading the investigation, assisted by Sparta Police Certified Accident Reconstructionist Lt. Neil Spidaletto, Detective Jeffrey McCarrick and Officer Richard Smith. Sergeant Joseph Pensado and Andover Police assisted at the scene.
Sparta Avenue is currently closed and it is anticipated it will not reopen until later this morning. Traffic is detoured east from Pinkneyville Road and west in Andover Township at Limecrest Road. Work crews from JCP&L are on scene making repairs.