Council secretary still critically hurt 4 others injured in Fallston crash

June 13, 1993|By Aminah Franklin | Aminah Franklin,Staff Writer

Doris Poulsen, the Harford County Council secretary who ha worked in government for two decades, remained in critical condition yesterday with injuries sustained in a three-vehicle crash Wednesday.

Mrs. Poulsen, 57, of Joppa was preparing to make a left turn in Fallston at 6:25 p.m. Wednesday, when her 1986 Cadillac was hit from behind by a 1984 Chrysler driven by Daniel Lee Jones of Rising Sun.

Mrs. Poulsen was flown by state police helicopter to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, where she was being treated for unspecified multiple injuries.

The crash, on Mountain Road at Cheyenne Avenue, injured four others. Three of them, a couple and their 19-year-old son, also remained at Shock Trauma yesterday.

The impact forced Mrs. Poulsen's car into the northbound lane of Mountain Road, where it collided head-on with a 1992 Ford Aerostar van driven by Pietro J. Raimondi of Fallston.

Mrs. Poulsen's car overturned, and it took rescue workers more than an hour to pull her from the wreckage, police said.

Police said that Mr. Jones, 38, who was treated for minor injuries at Franklin Square Hospital Wednesday night and released, was charged with drunken driving. He refused to take a blood test, police said.

News of Mrs. Poulsen's injuries shocked and saddened Harford lawmakers and other county residents and brought an outpouring of prayers and sympathy.

County Administrator Larry Klimovitz, who described Mrs. Poulsen as "the most congenial, most cooperative person" he has ever met, said, "Lots of prayers are going out of 220 Main St. [county government headquarters], believe me."

County Councilwoman Joanne Parrott was making dinner Wednesday evening, listening to a police scanner in her kitchen when it blared the first reports of a car accident.

Hours later, she heard the devastating news that her friend was critically injured in the crash.

"I was absolutely astounded," said Mrs. Parrott. "I listened to the whole thing over the scanner, so I knew how devastating it was, and I never once imagined that someone I knew was involved."

County Council President Jeffrey D. Wilson said the news left him shaken.

"Even though we know accidents are a part of daily life, when it touches someone close to you, it's so unbelievable and extremely painful," he said.

"Mrs. Poulsen is so vital, and full of energy and life. She's in command of her work, and she enjoys her family immensely."

He said that Mrs. Poulsen, who has been employed by the county for more than 19 years, serving as council secretary the last seven, is "the best when it comes to outstanding public servants."

"She performs her duties at a very high level and has always

been a source of great support to the council," he said.

Betty Fife, who has worked with Mrs. Poulsen for 12 years and has served as her assistant the past six, said she didn't sleep much after hearing about the accident.

"I was so troubled, especially since no one knew what was going on for so long," she said.

While Mrs. Poulsen is hospitalized, someone will take over her job, Mr. Wilson said. No temporary replacement has been selected, he said.

Mr. Raimondi and his wife, Mary, were taken to Fallston General Hospital with unspecified injuries, then transferred to Shock Trauma, where they were in satisfactory condition yesterday. Mr. Raimondi was transferred Wednesday night, his wife, Friday.

Their son, Vincent, 19, was flown by state police helicopter to Shock Trauma with Mrs. Poulsen.

He was in satisfactory condition yesterday.

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