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Eric Tatarinowicz courtesy- Theresa Aversano

Feb 16, 2016 10:22 PM

Community mourns loss after Hampton Falls firefighter dies in snowmobile crash

NH1.com

HAMPTON FALLS - The Hampton Falls community is mourninh the loss of one of their firefighters after a snowmobile accident on Monday.

Eric Tatarinowicz, 30 of Seabrook, had been part of the Hampton Falls volunteer fire department since 2002. He was connected to the community first as a junior firefighter, then moved the town's library for his Eagle Scout project.

"It's tough," said Fire Chief Jay Lord. "We are a close knit group; the town is a close knit town. To lose somebody is always devastating but it becomes worse when it becomes someone you know."

Monday afternoon on a snowmobile trail in Pittsburg, Tatarinowicz - known as "Vinny" by the fire department - lost control of the vehicle and struck a tree.

Despite efforts of other snowmobile riders trying to save him, the N.H. Department of Fish and Game said that Tatarinowicz was pronounced dead at the scene.

"With an injury off in the distance, the first thing that has to happen is whoever is over there with [a victim], has to go get or call [someone to help]," Lord said. "Then they have to respond, so it's a lot of time delay so it's nobody's fault, it's just logistics."

According to officials, Tatarinowicz was an experienced rider and was wearing his helmet.

"There's always elements that you can't control," Lord said. "This was apparently one of those elements that as much as he was in control of his sled; something bad happened."

The cause of the crash is under investigation as many from the community offer their support to Tatarinowicz's family, friends and fellow firefighters.

Chantel McCabe is a multimedia journalist and anchor for NH1 News. You can email her at cmccabe@nh1.com and follow her on Twitter, @Chantel_McCabe.

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