HOPKINTON, Mass. (WWLP) – A driver from Connecticut is expected to face charges after striking a Massachusetts State Trooper K9 unit on I-495 in Hopkinton Monday.
Trooper Kenneth Hanchett, and his partner, Orry were on a detail with emergency lights activated, protecting a road crew in the breakdown lane. They were in their marked Ford Explorer when it was struck from behind by an 81-year-old Connecticut man driving a 2020 Subaru Forester who was operating in the breakdown lane at around 1:44 p.m.
The crash was reported by Trooper Hanchett, he was taken by ambulance to UMass Medical Center in Worcester, where he was treated for injuries from the impact and remained overnight. Orry was taken by Westborough EMS, per Nero’s Law, to Tufts Veterinary Hospital in North Grafton. He was treated and also held overnight for observation.
The driver suffered minor injuries in the crash and was also taken to an area hospital. He is expected to face charges.
In April Governor Baker signed Nero’s law, a bill that provides some much-needed protection for our four-legged first responders. First responders will now be able to provide treatment to police K9’s including basic first aid, CPR, and administering life-saving interventions such as naloxone.
Hanchett and Orry were released from their hospital on Tuesday after being held overnight for tests and observation.
Lieutenant Erik Ramsland, commander of the State Police K9 Unit, said in a communication to his unit: “I am extremely proud of the response from our members. We had members on scene almost immediately helping Ken and Orry… Ken and Orry were never left alone without a unit member present. I have always referred to this as a family; once again, you have proven that point.”