Update: Alleged Drunken Driver Airlifted After Crash in Montauk Sunday Evening

The wreckage atop a tow truck after the crash. T.E. McMorrow

Update, March 27, 4 p.m.: East Hampton Town Police released the name of the 23-year-old Springs man they say was drunk when he lost control of his car and crashed into a tree after the St. Patrick's Day Parade in Montauk Sunday.

Witnesses told police Alan R. Marcelino, who was driving a 1999 Acura, was speeding when he tried to illegally pass a westbound vehicle 100 yards east of the merge between Montauk Highway and Old Montauk Highway. The accident occurred a few hours after the parade had ended.

Mr. Marcelino was headed west down the steep hill past the Hither Hills overlook. There, he began passing cars on the left. While it is legal to do so at the top of the hill, the broken yellow line becomes a double yellow line as farther down the hill, where westbound cars enter a blind curve. It was well past that point that Mr. Marcelino again pulled out into the westbound lane, according to an occupant of an oncoming car, Samantha Rodriguez, who said the Acura, after just missing colliding with her car, skidded sideways off the road. Once it hit the wet dirt on the shoulder, it slammed sideways into a tree, and then broke up into pieces. Mr. Marcelino was ejected from the car. The three sections of the car were twisted and crushed.

Mr. Marcelino, shaken but alive, was tended to by a police officer who said he smelled strongly of alcohol. After being charged with driving while intoxicated, he was flown by helicopter to Stony Brook University's trauma center, complaining of back pain. He agreed to have blood drawn to determine if there was alcohol in his system. He will be arraigned in East Hampton Town Justice Court at a later date.

Eddie Prado of Marshall and Sons, who has been operating a flatbed pickup tow truck for over 40 years, was called to the scene by police to remove the wrecked vehicle. He described the demolished Acura as one of the worst wrecks he has ever seen, and wondered how anyone could have survived such a crash, which occurred at 5:43 p.m. 

Update, March 26, 7:10 p.m.: The driver who crashed his car in Montauk on Sunday evening and was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital is under arrest on suspicion of drunken driving, East Hampton Town police reported.

The 23-year-old man, whose name has not yet been released, was attempting to pass a vehicle in front of him as he headed west on Montauk Highway, near Old Montauk Highway, at about 5:45 p.m., according to Sgt. Chelsea Tierney. He lost control of his 1999 Acura and slid sideways into a tree, she said from headquarters. He was the sole occupant of the vehicle.

The car was very badly damaged. According to police at the scene, it was in two pieces. 

While the driver was flown to Stony Brook, he was not believed to be seriously injured. He got himself out of the vehicle. When police arrived, he admitted to drinking, the sergeant said. 

Originally, March 26, 6:16 p.m.: One person was airlifted after an accident near the intersection of Montauk Highway and Old Montauk Highway in Montauk on Sunday evening. The crash reportedly only involved one vehicle. 

The Montauk Fire Department responded, along with East Hampton Town police, to the accident at 5:44 p.m. The patient was already out of the vehicle and did not require extrication. Police, who requested a flat-bed tow truck, reported the vehicle was in two pieces, but that there were no serious personal injuries. 

However, a patient was flown by Suffolk County medevac helicopter to Stony Brook University Hospital. Montauk emergency medical service personnel transported the patient to East Hampton Airport to meet the helicopter. A police officer may have flown with the patient.

East Hampton Town police are investigating the cause of the accident. Westbound traffic on Montauk Highway was being diverted at Cemetery Road. 

The Montauk Friends of Erin St. Patrick's Day parade took place earlier on Sunday.

This article will be updated with more information as it becomes available.