Lehigh Valley truck tips over on Route 50
KENT ISLAND — An tractortrailer truck tipped over and pinned the driver at 12:45 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 31; the crash caused traffic backups throughout the afternoon as far as the U.S. Route 50 and U.S. Route 301 split, according to Maryland State Police.
William Lawrence of Havertown, Pa., was westbound in 2016 International truck tractor when, for unknown reasons, the truck crossed all three lanes and overturned in the center median by the Kent Island Shopping Center.
The cab of the Lehigh Valley milk truck sustained damages that left Lawrence trapped for about 90 minutes before being extracted and flown by helicopter to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore to receive treatment, police said. He was discharged on Thursday, Sept. 1, according to hospital records.
Kent Island and Grasonville volunteer fire departments, emergency service units and two Maryland State Police helicopters aided in the removal of the driver.
The Shock Trauma GO TEAM, made up of a physician, anesthesiologist, surgeon or critical care medicine specialist and a certified nurse anesthetist, was called to the scene but was not used, Grasonville Volunteer Fire Department Chief Jason Anthony said.
The team assessed the situation because, right off the bat, Anthony said, there was uncertainty of how the driver was actually trapped because crews could not see his entire body.
“We like to be proactive, not reactive,” Anthony said.
The investigation of the crash is ongoing, police said.
Anthony said at certain points of the afternoon U.S. Route 50 was completely blocked off, such as when the helicopter landed and when the truck was finally brought up right.
Due to the predicted time of the road closure, the State Highway Administration, assisted by the Maryland Department of the Environment, set up a detour to keep traffic moving. Even with the detour, backups lasted into the evening.
“I’ve been doing this for 17 years, and it was probably one of the most time consuming and just tedious extractions I’ve ever seen and been on just because of the position and how the patient was trapped,” Anthony said.
Before the vehicle could be righted, the Lehigh Valley products were removed by hand. Once the vehicle was on its wheels, the Maryland State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division inspected the trailer’s equipment, police said.
The Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office posted on its Facebook page that due to the traffic backups bus transportation from schools on Kent Island would be delayed. Maryland Transportation Authority canceled two-way traffic on the William Preston Jr. Memorial Bridge that afternoon.
A Lehigh Valley tractor-trailer truck tipped over into the center median on U.S. Route 50 on Wednesday, Aug. 31, trapping the driver for about 90 minutes, Maryland State Police said.