New York

Authorities Hunt Driver in Freak Flying Tire Highway Death Crash in New York

Authorities initially thought the tire came from a tractor-trailer but now they're not sure -- and it may not have just been one tire that flew

What to Know

  • One person is dead after a tire came off a vehicle on the Sunrise Highway in West Babylon and smashed into another car
  • The victim in the freak accident has been identified as David Dorazio; police are asking for help finding the vehicle that lost the tires
  • The tire hit a second car on the highway, and the shaken driver of that SUV told News 4 she was "very lucky"

Authorities are asking for help finding the driver of a vehicle whose tire flung off on a Long Island highway and smashed into another car, spinning that driver into an out-of-control median crash that claimed the person's life. 

Cops initially thought the rogue tire came from a tractor-trailer, but they said late Thursday they weren't sure where the tire came from -- and that there may have been more than one. 

The vehicle was going eastbound on the Sunrise Highway in West Babylon earlier that afternoon when the tire somehow flew into the westbound lanes, smashing into the front passenger side window of a car, officials said. 

The driver of the Saturn then lost control and hit the center median of the highway; he was identified Friday as 60-year-old David Dorazio, of Lindenhurst. 

The tire then hit a second vehicle, a Chevy SUV with two people inside. The shaken driver in that SUV, Mary DiFranco-Garone, described the harrowing 30 seconds in which she witnessed the flying tire hitting the sedan. 

"It came from the other side of the highway, and it bounced, hit [the Saturn driver], he hit the wall to avoid him coming back, I swerved, and the tire hit me,"  she told News 4 New York.

"We're very lucky. That poor person, whoever they are. They were just at the wrong place at the wrong time," she said. 

A yellow tarp covered the crushed sedan as first responders attended to the scene. The tire was seen about 500 feet away from the crushed car. 

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