A head-on crash along Route 5 in the town of Herkimer has claimed three lives.

New York State Police say the collision occurred with such force that it took first responder approximately an hour to remove the victims from the vehicles. A Jeep Cherokee driven by Sean Bracken was traveling eastbound on Route 5 at about 10:30 on Sunday night when it collided head-on with a Chevrolet Trailblazer driven by Ryan Harrington, who was traveling westbound.

Both Bracken and Harrington were killed, along with Bracken's passenger, Faith Ann McFarland.

Troopers say the Trailblazer caught fire after the accident but was quickly extinguished by members of the East Herkimer Fire Department and City of Little Fall Fire Department.

The investigation into the accident in ongoing, state police said.

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