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Hamburg woman dies in rollover crash after car slices utility pole in half

A 60-year-old Hamburg woman died Wednesday evening in a rollover crash on Route 20 after her car left the road, went airborne and smashed into a utility pole, town police said.

The crash forced the closing of a section of Route 20 between North Creek and Lakeview roads for about four hours, and the presence of downed power lines required emergency responders to wait for National Grid to cut power to the scene before they could pull the victim from the vehicle.

The crash occurred at 7:35 p.m. when a four-door sedan driven by Michelle A. Opinsky, traveling westbound on Route 20 crossed over to the eastbound lanes, left the roadway, struck an earthen embankment and went flying into a utility pole, said Officer John Baker of the Hamburg Police Accident Investigation Unit.

Her car sliced the pole in half and ended up upside down with live wires draped over it. The woman, who was wearing a seat belt, likely died on impact, Baker said.

Police and Lake View firefighters by 8:20 p.m. were able to safely pull the woman's body from her car. She was the only person in the vehicle. Police continue to investigate the cause of the crash.


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