Role player airlifted after freak haunted hayride accident - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Role player airlifted after freak haunted hayride accident

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It is a little spooky this time of year in the small Rutland County community of Benson.

"It's really neat event that typically brings everybody together," said Benson fire chief Tom Neumann.

Each year, the Benson Haunted Hayride attracts 1,000 people. The event is a fundraiser for the fire department and the 8th grade trip to Washington D.C. It's a fright-filled, 3 1/2 mile, hour-long trip through the woods.

"Spooky sites, a lot of fun, they have different stuff, little fire things, the ghost cemetery, all sort of scary sights," said Neumann.

But Saturday night one of the hayrides turned into a real life nightmare.

"One of the role players was struck by one of the wagons, they ended up being airlifted to Albany med for treatment," said Vermont State Police Sergeant Mark Perkins.

"It appears there was so kind of slip," commented Neumann.

The family of 47 year old Norman Grenier says he suffered puncture lung, a fractured pelvis and broken ribs. He is expected to recover. It is unclear whether Grenier was run over or dragged by the tractor on Old Lake Road.

"It's still under investigation," said Perkins.

Chief Neumann says Grenier has been an active participant in the hayride for several years. Even though this is the first accident in the event's 13 years, organizers say they will examine how the hayride is run next year.

"Is there anything we can do to make this event safer, but to some extent, looking at it right now it just looks like a freak accident," said Neumann.

A community hoping for a speedy recovery for Grenier, a man who has brought many laughs, screams and frights to them over the years.

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