Two Teens Die in Fatal Fiery Crash While LIVE Streaming To Facebook – 3%
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Two Teens Die in Fatal Fiery Crash While LIVE Streaming To Facebook

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Lights illuminate Brooke Miranda Hughes’ face as the Scranton teen holds up her cellphone while driving along Interstate 380 near Tobyhanna shortly after midnight Tuesday.

She is broadcasting a live Facebook video.

“Are you going live?” asks her passenger, Dunmore teen Chaniya Morrison-Toomey.

Before Ms. Hughes can answer, more lights flash inside the car, followed by the sounds of screeching tires.

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Then blackness.

The live feed captured the last moments before a tractor-trailer plowed into the back of her car.

Ms. Hughes, 18, and Ms. Morrison-Toomey, 19, were declared dead at the scene.

State police investigators said the teens were traveling very slowly in the right lane of I-380 southbound.

An 18-year-old girl was live-streaming herself on Facebook Live as she drove along a Pennsylvania highway in the moments before a fiery crash that killed her and a passenger.  State police say Brooke Miranda Hughes was broadcasting live video on Facebook while driving very slowly in the right lane of Interstate 380 near Tobyhanna shortly after midnight on Tuesday.  The passenger, 19-year-old Chaniya Morrison-Toomey, can be heard asking, 'Are you going live?'  Before Hughes has a chance to reply, lights flash inside the car, followed by the sound of screeching tires.  Both teens died after a tractor-trailer plowed into the back of their Suzuki Forenza. State Police said Hughes was driving with a spare tire doughnut.

An 18-year-old girl was live-streaming herself on Facebook Live as she drove along a Pennsylvania highway in the moments before a fiery crash that killed her and a passenger. State police say Brooke Miranda Hughes was broadcasting live video on Facebook while driving very slowly in the right lane of Interstate 380 near Tobyhanna shortly after midnight on Tuesday. The passenger, 19-year-old Chaniya Morrison-Toomey, can be heard asking, ‘Are you going live?’ Before Hughes has a chance to reply, lights flash inside the car, followed by the sound of screeching tires. Both teens died after a tractor-trailer plowed into the back of their Suzuki Forenza. State Police said Hughes was driving with a spare tire doughnut.

The teens were driving with a spare tire doughnut, said Pennsylvania State Trooper Dave Peters, the spokesman for Troop N. State police had initially reported the teens were driving with a flat tire, but it’s unclear if that is true. The fiery wreck badly damaged the car, making it difficult to determine its condition beforehand, Trooper Peters said.

An 18-year-old girl was live-streaming herself on Facebook Live as she drove along a Pennsylvania highway in the moments before a fiery crash that killed her and a passenger.  State police say Brooke Miranda Hughes was broadcasting live video on Facebook while driving very slowly in the right lane of Interstate 380 near Tobyhanna shortly after midnight on Tuesday.  The passenger, 19-year-old Chaniya Morrison-Toomey, can be heard asking, 'Are you going live?'  Before Hughes has a chance to reply, lights flash inside the car, followed by the sound of screeching tires.  Both teens died after a tractor-trailer plowed into the back of their Suzuki Forenza. State Police said Hughes was driving with a spare tire doughnut.

An 18-year-old girl was live-streaming herself on Facebook Live as she drove along a Pennsylvania highway in the moments before a fiery crash that killed her and a passenger. State police say Brooke Miranda Hughes was broadcasting live video on Facebook while driving very slowly in the right lane of Interstate 380 near Tobyhanna shortly after midnight on Tuesday. The passenger, 19-year-old Chaniya Morrison-Toomey, can be heard asking, ‘Are you going live?’ Before Hughes has a chance to reply, lights flash inside the car, followed by the sound of screeching tires. Both teens died after a tractor-trailer plowed into the back of their Suzuki Forenza. State Police said Hughes was driving with a spare tire doughnut.

The driver of the truck, Michael Jay Parks of Tobyhanna, was not hurt. It’s too early in the investigation to know if police will charge him with a crime.

A friend of both teens, Samantha Piasecki, 17, of Scranton, said she rode in that car with Ms. Hughes and Ms. Morrison-Toomey Monday night.

Chaniya Morrison-Toomey -- FB3.JPG  -- Two teens died in a fiery wreck early Tuesday when their car was hit from behind by a tractor-trailer, according to state troopers.  It happened on Interstate 380 in Monroe County. Troopers say the two teens were traveling slowly when a tractor-trailer hit them.  Many of us have been in the position these girls were early Tuesday. They were driving slowly, troopers believe, because they had a donut spare tire on the car. A tractor trailer driver was unable to stop and hit the vehicle, killing Brooke Hughes, 18, of Scranton and Chaniya Morrison, 19, of Dunmore.  State troopers are using the charred remains of the Suzuki Forenza to try to piece together just what caused a tractor-trailer to collide with the car carrying the two teens.  Troopers say the car had a donut spare tire on it leading them to believe the girls had a flat earlier in the night. Witnesses also told investigators there may have been something wrong with the Suzuki's tail lights.

Chaniya Morrison-Toomey — FB3.JPG — Two teens died in a fiery wreck early Tuesday when their car was hit from behind by a tractor-trailer, according to state troopers. It happened on Interstate 380 in Monroe County. Troopers say the two teens were traveling slowly when a tractor-trailer hit them. Many of us have been in the position these girls were early Tuesday. They were driving slowly, troopers believe, because they had a donut spare tire on the car. A tractor trailer driver was unable to stop and hit the vehicle, killing Brooke Hughes, 18, of Scranton and Chaniya Morrison, 19, of Dunmore. State troopers are using the charred remains of the Suzuki Forenza to try to piece together just what caused a tractor-trailer to collide with the car carrying the two teens. Troopers say the car had a donut spare tire on it leading them to believe the girls had a flat earlier in the night. Witnesses also told investigators there may have been something wrong with the Suzuki’s tail lights.

“They were both down-to-Earth people,” she said of her friends. “They had good personalities. They had smiles that could light up dark rooms. Anytime you were with them it was always fun.”

Ms. Hughes asked Ms. Piasecki to come with them, she said, but Ms. Piasecki asked to be dropped at her mother’s home in Scranton.

She was thankful, she said, that she got out of the car, “but I feel like if I went, I could have stopped it somehow.”

At about 3 a.m., she watched the video.

“It broke me,” Ms. Piasecki said.

The video has been viewed more than 7,000 times.

It was posted to Ms. Hughes’ profile page, but not by her.

Brooke Hughes -FB.jpg  -- Two teens died in a fiery wreck early Tuesday when their car was hit from behind by a tractor-trailer, according to state troopers.  It happened on Interstate 380 in Monroe County. Troopers say the two teens were traveling slowly when a tractor-trailer hit them.  Many of us have been in the position these girls were early Tuesday. They were driving slowly, troopers believe, because they had a donut spare tire on the car. A tractor trailer driver was unable to stop and hit the vehicle, killing Brooke Hughes, 18, of Scranton and Chaniya Morrison, 19, of Dunmore.  State troopers are using the charred remains of the Suzuki Forenza to try to piece together just what caused a tractor-trailer to collide with the car carrying the two teens.  Troopers say the car had a donut spare tire on it leading them to believe the girls had a flat earlier in the night. Witnesses also told investigators there may have been something wrong with the Suzuki's tail lights.

Brooke Hughes -FB.jpg — Two teens died in a fiery wreck early Tuesday when their car was hit from behind by a tractor-trailer, according to state troopers. It happened on Interstate 380 in Monroe County. Troopers say the two teens were traveling slowly when a tractor-trailer hit them. Many of us have been in the position these girls were early Tuesday. They were driving slowly, troopers believe, because they had a donut spare tire on the car. A tractor trailer driver was unable to stop and hit the vehicle, killing Brooke Hughes, 18, of Scranton and Chaniya Morrison, 19, of Dunmore. State troopers are using the charred remains of the Suzuki Forenza to try to piece together just what caused a tractor-trailer to collide with the car carrying the two teens. Troopers say the car had a donut spare tire on it leading them to believe the girls had a flat earlier in the night. Witnesses also told investigators there may have been something wrong with the Suzuki’s tail lights.

The video goes dark for seven minutes before someone picks it up again. At the end of the eight-minute video, a man is heard speaking and a blurry but bearded face can be seen before the video ends. After a Facebook Live video is broadcast, someone must push a button on the phone to post it to the web.

State police will use the video in their investigation, Trooper Dave Peters said.

The video will not be removed because it does not violate Facebook’s rules.

“People watching Live video can report potential violations of our Community Standards, and we will take the appropriate action,” said Andrea Saul, a Facebook spokeswoman. “We also encourage people to contact law enforcement if they see a Live stream in which someone is in danger.”

According to its Community Standards, Facebook marks as disturbing any videos that show the violent death of a human by accident, murder or suicide. The content is not accessible to users under 18, a warning screen is added and auto-play is disabled.

Ms. Hughes was a student at West Scranton High School, a spokesman for the school district confirmed. Grief counselors attended to students at the school Tuesday and Wednesday, he said.

The Monroe County Coroner’s Office conducted autopsies on the teens Wednesday.

Because the car burned, investigators could not visually identify the teens. Assistant Chief Deputy Coroner Michael Sak, who conducted the autopsy, could not be reached Wednesday.

Anyone with information on the fatal crash should call the State Police barracks in Swiftwater at 570-839-7701.

Contact the writer: pcameron@timesshamrock.com, @pcameronTT on Twitter

Friends and family of Chaniya Morrison-Toomey have started a fundraising website to pay the teen’s funeral expenses. To donate, go to www.gofundme.com and search for Chaniya Toomey. The title of the fundraiser is “For our beloved angel.” Her employer, the KFC on North Keyser Avenue in Scranton, is also accepting donations for the funeral.

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