Two injured when antique pickup truck, tractor-trailer crash

January 12, 1995|By Bill Talbott | Bill Talbott,Sun Staff Writer

Two men were injured yesterday morning in a head-on crash between an antique pickup truck and a tractor-trailer loaded with grain on Taneytown Pike at Bear Branch, about a mile west of Mayberry Road.

William Scott Miller, 38, of Taneytown was ejected from his 1948 Ford pickup when the front, including the engine and all connecting motor parts, was ripped from the frame. The parts were scattered on both sides of the road, which remained closed for several hours.

Mr. Miller was flown to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore in a state police MedEvac helicopter. A hospital spokeswoman said he was released yesterday afternoon.

John G. Hundertmark, 40, of Hampstead, the driver of the tractor-trailer, was taken to the Gettysburg Hospital and released after treatment, a spokeswoman said.

Tfc. R. S. Hansen, the investigating officer, said Mr. Miller was driving east on Route 140 at 8:40 a.m., passing another vehicle on the two-lane highway, when he lost control and crossed the center line into the path of the tractor-trailer.

Trooper Hansen said the driver of the tractor-trailer pulled the truck to the right shoulder, trying to allow Mr. Miller to pass.

Trooper Hansen said the Ford pickup truck was knocked into a 1990 Ford Econoline van driven by Harry B. Dougherty, 59, of Taneytown. He was not injured.

After the collision, the driver of the tractor-trailer lost control and the vehicle flipped on its right side, sliding 400 feet and spilling tons of grain mixed with molasses across the road.

Kenneth R. McElfresh, 29, of Keymar was driving his empty tractor-trailer east on Route 140 and saw the accident. He said the road was wet because snow had started to fall a short time before the collision.

"I saw the crash and the overturned truck coming toward me. I stood on the brakes of my truck and tried to find where to go, but the [overturned] truck was across the entire road, and there was no place to go. I slid for about 75 feet, coming to rest only two feet from the grain truck, as the rear tailgate came around and hit my truck."

Mr. McElfresh said the truck driver climbed out the driver's side window and jumped down to the road.

It took crews until about 11:30 a.m. to clear the road. After the damaged vehicles were removed, state crews used a street sweeper to pick up the thin layer of wet grain that remained on the highway. A fire engine from Taneytown was called to the site at noon to hose down the highway. Traffic was rerouted to Mayberry Road to Old Taneytown Road.

State police reported several other accidents they say resulted from yesterday's light snowfall, and the county snow emergency plan was implemented at 11 a.m. It was lifted at 3:30 p.m., a fire official said.

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