Parishville, NY, Mar 06, 2013 — Snow conditions have been improving in parts of the North Country the last two weeks and that means more sledders out on the trail. But there have also been five snowmobile deaths across the region.
The most recent fatalities occurred Monday night in Parishville in St. Lawrence County. Two snowmobilers died after their sleds hit a patch of open water on Rainbow Falls Reservoir.
The Watertown Daily Times identified the men as Robert Campbell, age 78, from Norwood, and Robert Whalen, 87, of Canton.
Other sledders attempted a rescue using a canoe and one of them fell into the water as well. Campbell and Whalen were pronounced dead at Canton-Potsdam Hospital. A third man was treated for hypothermia.
Monday's accident follows a deadly weekend with two men killed in a snowmobile crash near Indian Lake. According to the Glens Falls Post Star, the two men were Paul Prill, age 51, from Schenectady and Thomas Dykstra, 59, from Suffern.
State police say alcohol may have contributed to that head-on crash.
Another man, 47-year-old Scott Streeter, was also killed on Saturday in a separate incident when he was thrown from his sled in the town of Ohio in the western Adirondacks.
According to authorities, Streeter struck a tree and was pronounced dead at the scene.
In late February, officials in Vermont also responded to two snowmobile deaths, including one involving a sledder from upstate New York.