Setting sun factor in Bangor crash

Posted Oct. 05, 2010, at 11:28 p.m.

BANGOR, Maine — The setting sun was cited as a factor in a rear-end crash Tuesday that brought westbound traffic on Interstate 395 to a near halt during the busy evening commute.

The accident happened about 6 p.m., soon after a vehicle that was not involved started to take the Route 202 exit but veered back onto the highway after coming to a near stop, Sgt. William Sheehan of the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Department said Tuesday night. That, he said, caused drivers behind it to slow down to a near stop as well.

One of those drivers was Jean Benjamin, 38, of Orlando, Fla., whose 1998 BMW sedan was struck from behind by a 1989 Toyota Camry driven by Deloris Miller, 54, of Bangor, Sheehan said.

“She was blinded by the sun,” which Sheehan said was setting and “very intense.”

Both motorists had minor injuries, Sheehan said. He said Miller had bruising on her chest from her seat belt, and Benjamin complained of neck and back pain. Both drivers were examined by emergency medical personnel from the Bangor Fire Department and declined transportation to the hospital, he said.

Sheehan said he was assisted at the scene by Deputy Bob Pelletier of the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Department, state police Trooper Forrest Simpson and Brewer Police Chief Perry Antone, who happened upon the accident and stopped to help.

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