HANCOCK, Maine — A bad accident on Route 1 Saturday afternoon sent a Surry man to the hospital and brought traffic to a grinding halt.
Traffic was stopped by emergency response personnel after a red Chevrolet pickup truck went off the road and came to rest upside down in Kilkenny Stream, just west of Tideway Market.
Keith D. Beausoleil, 52, was driving the truck west on the highway around 4 p.m. when he lost control of the vehicle and drove it into the creek, according to deputies with the Hancock County Sheriff’s Department. He was flown by LifeFlight helicopter to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor, but he is not believed to have suffered any serious injuries, they said.
Deputies said alcohol may have been a factor in the accident, which is being investigated.
Traffic in both directions on Route 1 slowed to a crawl and then stopped completely as a wrecker truck backed up to the north side of the bridge over the stream to lift the demolished truck back up over the guardrail and onto the pavement. Many motorists were stuck in stopped traffic for more than two hours before the roadway was cleared and passing vehicles started moving again.
According to Deputy Jeff McFarland, Beausoleil went off the road east of a guardrail that leads to the bridge. Beausoleil drove through tall grass and underbrush on the north side of the guardrail, but then swerved back up toward the road before driving over a concrete retaining wall and then flipping his vehicle over the edge into the creek. A black smudge mark on the back side of the concrete retaining wall over the creek was made by Beausoleil’s vehicle as it pitched over the edge and down into the water approximately a dozen feet below.
Deputies said no other vehicles were involved in the accident. It was unclear at the accident scene if Beausoleil was wearing a seat belt at the time, or if there were any air bags in the truck that deployed upon impact.
Besides the sheriff’s department and LifeFlight, fire departments from the towns of Hancock, Ellsworth and Lamoine also went to the accident, as did crews from County Ambulance.