Fatality might be linked to snow

Woman, 19, dies in Harford accident

frozen, burst pipes are a widespread problem

February 08, 2007|By Anica Butler | Anica Butler,sun reporter

A light coating of snow yesterday closed or delayed the opening of area schools - to the delight of children - but left roads slick and might have contributed to a fatal accident in Harford County.

The Baltimore area received 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 inches of snow, according to the National Weather Service.

Fire departments and others responded to calls of frozen and burst water pipes and a few fires.

A 19-year-old woman was killed when a car in which she was riding slid off a snow-covered road in Edgewood.

Kaley Alyssa Cooper was thrown from the car, which flipped on its side after sliding off Willoughby Beach Road, near Freys Road about 1:30 a.m.

She suffered a head injury and was pronounced dead at the scene, according to Lt. Jim Eyler, a Harford County Sheriff's Office spokesman.

Another occupant of the vehicle - Keith Michael Smith Jr., 22, of Havre de Grace - was injured and taken to Maryland Shock Trauma Center by an emergency medical services crew from the Abingdon Volunteer Fire Company.

It was unclear who was driving, police said. The car failed to negotiate a turn, Eyler said, suggesting that speed was a contributing factor in the accident. Investigators are awaiting the results of a blood analysis.

Sledding turned hazardous for an 11-year-old girl at Carrolltown Elementary School. Medics from the Sykesville-Freedom District Fire Department took the girl, who had trouble breathing after a sledding accident, to Carroll Hospital Center, where she was treated and released, officials said.

The Anne Arundel County Fire Department dealt with about 20 calls for burst pipes. Lt. Frank Fennell said a small assisted-living center in Pasadena sent nine of its 14 residents to relatives and other facilities after a pipe in the attic froze and sent water into rooms.

Three fires were started yesterday by Anne Arundel residents trying to thaw pipes.

A salt contractor for the State Highway Administration, spreading salt on Dorsey Road, struck the Interstate 97 overpass about 2:30 a.m., said spokeswoman Lora Rakowski. To free the truck, the six tons of salt it was carrying had to be dumped, she said. The salt was reloaded. Nobody was hurt; the bridge sustained minor damage.

In Carroll County, about a dozen children and parents flocked to the big hill on McDaniel College's golf course for the first sledding day this winter.

Josh Smith took the day off to take sons Max, 8, and Quinn, 5, sledding there.

"They woke up ... and went running for the window," Smith said. "They were jumping around all over the place."

Max said the dry snow, with exposed patches of grass and leaves, was not ideal for sledding. But he made do.

"It's worth it 'cause it's fun," the Westminster third-grader said of braving the cold.

Business at the Glen Burnie Ice Rink was slow, managers said. At 5 p.m., seven hours after opening, 50 people had come to skate.

"In this weather, people don't come as much. People think it's too cold when it's below freezing," Pete Dangremond, the 24-year-old general manager, said with a shrug. "They want to stay in."

Cindy Truong braved the brisk air with a cousin but came off the ice into the warming hut within 20 minutes. "My mom says I'm not supposed to get sick," she said.

anica.butler@baltsun.com

Sun reporters John-John Williams IV, Jamie Stiehm, Laura McCandlish, Mary Gail Hare and Andrea F. Siegel contributed to this article.

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