Collision in Glen Arm kills two, injures four 12 deaths over holiday

driver error, speed blamed in most crashes

November 30, 1998|By Richard Irwin | Richard Irwin,SUN STAFF

Two people were killed and four others were injured yesterday when three vehicles collided on a curving stretch of Harford Road in Glen Arm, Baltimore County.

The deaths brought to 12 the number of people killed on Maryland roads during the Thanksgiving Day holiday that began at 7 p.m. Wednesday and ended at midnight yesterday, said Cpl. Adrian Yancey at state police headquarters in Pikesville.

Yancey said driver error and speed contributed to most of the fatal accidents during the holiday.

"The weather can't be blamed this time," he said, adding that this Thanksgiving has seen more traffic deaths than in recent years. Figures for previous years were not available.

In yesterday's double-fatal accident, Baltimore County police Cpl. Art Nilsen said witnesses reported seeing a speeding Honda Civic with four people traveling south in the 11900 block of Harford Road near Hutschenreuter Road about 5: 15 p.m. It crossed the double-yellow line of the two-lane road and crashed head-on into a northbound Jeep Cherokee, witnesses said.

According to Nilsen, witnesses reported that a Dodge pickup truck occupied by two men and following the Jeep glanced off the Jeep when it was struck by the Honda.

Pronounced dead at the scene were the male driver of the Honda and a male passenger sitting behind him, Nilsen said. He said two female passengers in the Honda were injured, one of them a sister of one of the deceased.

The two occupants of the Jeep were injured, Nilsen said. The two occupants of the pickup truck were unhurt.

The identities of the dead and injured were not immediately available.

David Lidie, whose house is yards from the crash site, heard the collision while working in his back yard.

"It sounded just like a large-caliber rifle being fired," Lidie said.

After dialing 911, he arrived at the scene as the driver of the pickup truck was using his fire extinguisher to douse flames from one of the demolished vehicles.

"There was a lot of smoke and flames," Lidie said.

Lidie said the crash occurred at the last of several southbound curves.

"People speed down this road all the time," he said.

The crash caused both lanes of the 11900 block of Harford Road south of Mount Vista Road to be closed for several hours as county police traffic investigators tried to re-create the collision.

Five county ambulances and four MedEvac helicopters from Martin State Airport in Essex, Frederick, Centreville in Queen Anne's County and Norwood in Montgomery County responded to the accident scene.

Capt. Jerry Pfeifer of the Baltimore County Fire Department said ambulances from Kingsville, Perry Hall, Parkville, Jacksonville and Towson were dispatched.

Pfeifer said one ambulance was used as a command center and the others transported the injured to a field about 1,000 feet south of the accident scene, where they were placed onto a state police MedEvac helicopter and flown to Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore.

Nilsen said the injured were reported in stable condition several hours later.

Pfeifer said damage to the Honda and Jeep was severe and that at least one of the injured in the two vehicles was trapped before being freed by firefighters.

Pub Date: 11/30/98

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