COLUMBIA, Maine — Nine people were treated at area hospitals Tuesday for a wide variety of injuries — none of them life-threatening — after a three-vehicle accident around noon near the Four Corners area of Columbia.
The crash happened at the bottom of a steep hill at the intersection of U.S. Route 1 and Ridge Road, an area known to have frequent accidents.
Sgt. Timothy Tabbutt of the Washington County Sheriff’s Department said one vehicle had slowed to turn left onto Ridge Road when it was rear-ended by a second vehicle. The collision pushed the first car into a third vehicle that was driving in the opposite lane on Route 1.
All of the victims were either wearing their seat belts or secured in child safety seats, Tabbutt said, and all were taken to Down East Community Hospital in Machias for treatment.
Pleasant River, Machias and Milbridge ambulances took most of the victims, but Tabbutt said several also went to the hospital in private vehicles.
The car that was attempting to turn was a 1999 Ford sedan operated by Christi White, 19, of Cherryfield. She had two passengers — a child and Samantha Hurlburt, 24, of Milbridge.
The vehicle that struck White was a 2005 Kia van operated by Michelle Miller, 46, of Machiasport. She had three passengers — two children and their mother, Jessica Miller, 22, of Machiasport.
The third vehicle was a late model Jeep operated by Jeanene Dow, 65, of Steuben, whose passenger was Marilyn Grant, 79.
All three vehicles had substantial damage, Tabbutt said.
He was assisted at the scene by four Washington County deputies and members of the Columbia, Columbia Falls and Harrington fire departments who provided traffic control. The road had to be shut down for just over an hour until debris and vehicles could be cleared.
Milbridge police also assisted at the scene.
The accident remains under investigation.