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ACCIDENT STALLS TRAFFIC AT WILLIAMSVILLE TOLL BARRIER

A suspected drunken driver hit two vehicles and a barrier near the Thruway's Williamsville toll booths Thursday afternoon, snarling traffic in his wake.

Thruway State Police said Norman L. Barnes, 43, of Simsbury, Conn., who was driving a Cadillac, first hit a car driven by Frederic McKinley of Canandaigua on the ramp from Youngmann Highway to the eastbound Thruway. Then he hit a tractor-trailer driven by Shawn Geary of Lancaster while trying to pass the the truck, which was stopped in traffic, on the right side.

The third accident occurred as Barnes drove into a concrete barrier at the Williamsville toll barrier, troopers said.

No injuries were reported, but traffic was slowed as the wreckage was cleared from the roadway. The accidents occurred shortly before 3 p.m.

Barnes was charged with driving while intoxicated and several vehicle and traffic violations, troopers said. He was arraigned before Cheektowaga Town Justice Ronald E. Kmiotek and sent to the Erie County Holding Center in lieu of $1,000 bail.

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