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Propane truck hits East Patchogue building, says deli clerk

Suffolk County police and the Hagerman Fire Department

Suffolk County police and the Hagerman Fire Department responded after a propane truck struck part of a building in East Patchogue. (Dec. 24, 2012) Credit: James Carbone

Kayla Regensburger was making egg sandwiches at the grill of the Bayside Delicatessen in East Patchogue Monday morning when she thought she felt a force of Mother Nature.

"It felt like an earthquake was going through the deli," said Regensburger, 19, a part-time worker at the deli on South Country Road. "I looked up, and I see this tanker sliding across the front of the building."

Suffolk County police and the Hagerman Fire Department responded after a propane truck struck part of the building at about 10 a.m.

About 15 people, including workers, were inside the deli, but Regensburger, a student at Suffolk Community College, said no one inside was seriously injured. Only the driver of the truck appeared to have minor injuries, but she was unable to provide details.

Suffolk police also had no details early Monday, but a spokeswoman said it appeared one person had minor injuries.

The Hagerman Fire Department did not immediately respond to calls seeking more information.

Regensburger said the truck came crashing across the front of the building as a woman driving a silver car was trying to make a left turn into the deli's parking area.

Regensburger said the driver of the car appeared to think she had enough time to make the turn, but the truck swerved, hit a parked fire department vehicle, flipped onto its side and shaved the front of the building.

"It was very, very scary," she said, adding that people "were lucky not to have been injured."

Most of the customers and workers were in the middle or the back of the deli near the counter area when the truck hit, she said.

Two deliverymen who had just finished supplying the deli with bottled water narrowly escaped the truck as it took out the front doors, Regensburger said.

The deli's owner declined a request for an interview.

Regensburger said the deli was going to close early for Christmas Eve. "Now, it looks like we'll be closed for at least two weeks" for repairs, she said.

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