Pennsylvania police to reconstruct fatal accident

August 29, 1993|By Mike Farabaugh | Mike Farabaugh,Staff Writer

Now that the precise location of the Maryland-Pennsylvania border across Route 165 north from Pylesville has been determined, Pennsylvania State Police will reconstruct the fatal accident that left a 21-year-old man dead and three people injured Aug. 21 near Pylesville.

Terry James Seiple, 21, of Red Lion, Pa., a passenger in the back seat of a 1977 Ford Mustang driven by a friend, was killed in a head-on collision with a 1977 Chevrolet van that had crossed the center line.

The driver of the Mustang, Brett Laughman, 20, of Dallastown, Pa., and another passenger, Melissa Flaharty, 20, of Airville, Pa., were flown to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore.

Mr. Laughman remains in fair and stable condition there, said a hospital spokeswoman.

Ms. Flaharty was released from Shock Trauma Tuesday.

The driver of the van, John Barry Bonham, 17, of Whiteford was released from the hospital Monday.

Police from both states investigating the accident knew the point of the collision's impact, but were uncertain if it was in Maryland or Pennsylvania.

Cpl. Charles Kleber, a 21-year veteran accident reconstructionist for Pennsylvania State Police, said the jurisdictional problem arose because signs welcoming motorists to Pennsylvania (in the northbound lanes) and Maryland (in the south bound lanes) are not placed on the state line.

"If they had been, they would have blocked a lane entrance to someone's property," Corporal Kleber said.

A state highway survey team determined last week that the impact occurred in Pennsylvania, 4 feet, 3 inches north of the state line, Corporal Kleber said.

That border now is painted on the roadway.

Corporal Kleber said he expects to complete his investigation by midweek, after he has received copies of reports made by Maryland troopers.

Reports on the blood tests from both drivers, which would indicate if either driver had been drinking alcohol, must be officially requested from the Maryland Shock Trauma Center, Corporal Kleber said.

"I cannot begin to determine a cause without first seeing all the evidence," he said.

One bit of potential evidence already has been requested from the security officer of the Dauphin Deposit Bank, about 150 feet north of the accident site.

"That bank has a surveillance camera overlooking its parking lot to the south," Corporal Kleber said. "I can't wait to see the videotape. I'm hoping it captured the accident."

Corporal Kleber said if the videotape is helpful, he will be able to compute the exact speed of each vehicle at impact.

He said he would give his investigation findings to the York County, Pa., prosecutor.

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