Driver suffers minor injuries in Searsport crash

Posted March 02, 2010, at 12:40 p.m.

SEARSPORT, Maine — A Belfast woman lost control of her minivan Tuesday morning on U.S. Route 1 in an accident that demolished the vehicle and caused her minor injuries, according to Searsport Police Chief Richard LaHaye.

Anita Murphy, 31, was headed toward Stockton Springs in a 2002 Dodge Grand Caravan before 9 a.m. when she apparently crossed over the centerline and rolled the van over an embankment.

Murphy told police later Tuesday that she had fallen asleep at the wheel, according to LaHaye.

The van came to a halt against trees, with its front end crumpled into a muddy culvert. The force of the impact apparently caused the steering wheel to crack, an authority said at the scene.

The Searsport Police Department, Searsport Fire and Ambulance and Belfast Ambulance responded to the call. Rescuers used an extrication device to get Murphy out of the demolished van.

Murphy complained of chest pain and abrasions and was taken to Waldo County General Hospital, LaHaye said.

He estimated that the accident caused $6,500 in damage.