Seacoast Online - Maine News
Portsmouth Herald - Hampton Union - Exeter News-Letter - Dover Community News - Rockingham News - York County Coast Star - The York Weekly
August 28, 2006

PHOTO
Rescue workers carray a passenger who was ejected from a car and thrown over the York River embankment.
Photo by Chris Outcalt

Car pins man

By Chris Outcalt
coutcalt@seacoastonline.com

Complete Maine News Index

YORK, Maine -- One person is in critical condition as a result of a Sunday morning rollover accident on Interstate 95.

According to Trooper Mike Cook of the Maine State Police, a Mustang and a BMW were "racing" north on the highway when they came together and crashed into the guardrail.

The collision caused the passenger in the back seat of the Mustang to be ejected from the car. According to Cook, he was thrown over the bridge and landed on the embankment that leads into the York River.

The BMW crashed through the guardrail and landed in the mud flats of the river, where it eventually came to rest on top of the passenger who was ejected. Police are withholding the man's identity.

Joseph Soares, who lives in Taunton Mass., said he was traveling behind the two cars when the collision happened and was one of the first people on scene.

PHOTO
Rescue crews respond to a rollover accident on Interstate 95 Sunday morning.
Photo by Chris Outcalt

With the help of two other people, Soares said they were able to lift the car off the passenger's leg and help him move from underneath the BMW.

"If there is ever an example of God looking over somebody, this is it," Soares said. "He was lucky to have a bunch people around right away that were able to help him."

Once they arrived, rescue personnel carried the passenger up from the embankment in a stretcher. He was transported to Portsmouth Regional Hospital, where he remains in critical condition.

Bob Guethlen and his sister, Janis, of Rockwood Maine, said they were approximately two car lengths behind the cars when the accident occurred.

"It looked like a stunt out of a movie," Janis Guethlen said.

"They were flying," Bob Guethlen said. "It looked like they were stuck together."

In addition to Maine State Police, police and fire and rescue personnel from Kittery and York responded to the accident, which occurred around 9:30 a.m.

The ejected passenger was the only person who suffered life-threatening injuries, according to Cook.

Michael Dempsey, a N.H. resident who was driving the BMW, sustained minor injuries and was not taken to the hospital. The driver of the Mustang, Rebecca Knox, 25, of South Portland Maine, sustained serious injuries and was taken to Portsmouth Regional Hospital. Tiffany Noel, 23, of Westbrook, Maine, who was in the front passenger seat of the Mustang, was treated for minor scrapes and bruises at York Hospital.

No charges were filed Sunday, but Cook said he would consult the district attorney's office to determine the specifics and that charges will eventually be filed.

Cook said northbound and southbound traffic was backed up for several hours as a result of the accident.

PHOTO
York police officer John Lizanecz and other rescue personnel view the scene of a Sunday morning accident on the Maine Turnpike.
Photo by Chris Outcalt
August 30, 2006
Crash injures four
By Chris Outcalt

YORK -- A Maine man's condition was upgraded to stable on Monday following a rollover accident on Interstate 95 where he was thrown from the back seat of a car and pinned by another vehicle.

According to state trooper Mike Cook of the Maine State Police, a Mustang and a BMW were "racing" north on the highway when the vehicles merged and crashed into the guardrail.

The collision caused Brett Halliday, 28, of an unknown address in southern Maine, to be ejected from the Mustang and thrown over the bridge just before the weigh station, where he landed on the embankment of the York River.

The BMW crashed through the guardrail and landed on top of Halliday's leg.

With the help of two other people, Joseph Soares, who lives in Taunton, Mass., said he and the other witnesses were able to lift the car off of Halliday's leg and help him move from underneath the BMW.

"If there is ever an example of God looking over somebody, this is it," Soares said. "He was lucky to have a bunch people around right away that were able to help him."

Bob Guethlen and his sister, Janis, of Rockwood, Maine, said they were approximately two car lengths behind the cars when the accident occurred.

"It looked like a stunt out of a movie," Janis Guethlen said.

"They were flying," Bob Guethlen said. "It looked like they were stuck together."

Halliday was transported to Portsmouth Regional Hospital following the accident where he was listed in critical condition. On Monday, he was transferred to the Maine Medical Center in Portland, where his condition was upgraded,

York police officer Owen Davis, an accident reconstruction specialist, was on the scene of the collision Sunday afternoon conducting an investigation of the crash.

According to York Sgt. Thomas Baran, Davis was able to gather all the information he needed on Sunday and is now working on calculating the speed of the vehicles and other information concerning the accident. However, it could be two weeks or more before Davis finishes his investigation, said Baran.

And according to Cook, the investigating officer, charges could be filed pending the outcome of the reconstruction work.

"There is a lot of ground work to do now before any final determinations are made," said Baran, who added that when Davis finishes his investigation he will submit it to the Maine State Police for final approval.

The York Fire Department, Kittery Fire Department, Maine State Police, Portsmouth Naval Shipyard Ambulance, York Police and Maine Marine Patrol responded to the accident, said Baran.

"The rescue process went very well," said Baran. "I think it speaks well to our facilities and personnel in the area."

Michael Dempsey, 29, of Franklin, N.H., was driving the BMW, and only sustained minor injuries. The driver of the Mustang, Rebecca Knox, 25, of South Portland, Maine, sustained serious injuries and was taken to Portsmouth Regional Hospital. Tiffany Noel, 23, of Westbrook, Maine, who was in the front passenger seat of the Mustang, was treated for minor scrapes and bruises at York Hospital.

Officials from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection were also called to the accident scene because the BMW was leaking motor oil near the river.

"They were able to put down some absorbent pads to soak up the oil," said Baran. "It turned out to be a minor thing."

Seacoast Online is owned and operated by Seacoast Media Group.
Copyright 2006 Seacoast Online. All rights reserved. Please read our
Copyright Notice and Terms of Use.
Seacoast Media Group is a subsidiary of
Ottaway Newspapers, Inc., a Dow Jones Company.
Esmerelda's PageZ3ers.com~ Esmerelda's Home Page