Six persons were injured, at least two critically, in a crash involving three vehicles that occurred about 2 p.m. on Monday along SR309 in West Penn Township, at the entrance to the Village Square Mall.

The names of the victims involved were not available as a township police officer informed the TIMES NEWS this morning that the investigating officer would not be available until later in the day.

Information gathered from the scene indicated three persons were flown to Lehigh Valley area hospitals by three medical helicopters which landed on the roadway just south of the scene. Three other persons injured in the crash, two males and a female, were taken to St. Luke's Miners Memorial Hospital, in Coaldale.

Because no names were made available to the media, updated condition reports could not be obtained this morning.

At least two of the persons flown from the scene, and possibly three, were ejected from one of the vehicles.

The vehicles involved included a van, a Volvo sedan and a Volkswagen Jetta.

According to information received, the crash occurred as the driver of the van was traveling northbound in the passing lane and then changed into the right lane. At that point the van collided with the Volvo, which was exiting the parking lot of the strip mall to go north. After impact, the Volvo was pushed into the Jetta driven by a woman. There were two men in the Volvo.

Ambulances from Tamaqua, Penn-Mahoning and West Penn and a paramedic unit from Lehighton responded to the scene along with Tamaqua police and state police at Frackville. State police are assisting in the probe with a reconstruction team, it was reported.

Busy SR309 was shut down while the helicopters landed and removed the injured. Traffic in the area was backed up for a period of time.

West Penn Fire Company and the South Ward Fire Company of Tamaqua were also called to the scene. Fire police from the township and Tamaqua assisted with traffic control. Tamaqua Rescue Squad also was called to the scene.