BREWER, Maine — A serious two-vehicle crash late Tuesday morning on the eastbound I-395 offramp to South Main Street left a woman with serious injuries and sent her husband and another man to the hospital.
Brewer police said a silver Toyota Tacoma pickup and a Jeep collided on the interstate, flipping the truck onto its roof on the offramp and sending the Jeep into a ditch around 11:40 a.m.
Pauline Guimond, 57, of Turner, a passenger in the truck driven by her husband, Ronald Guimond, 59, was put on a stretcher and placed in an ambulance at 12:09 p.m. after emergency personnel extricated her from the overturned vehicle.
Brewer police Lt. Chris Martin said the woman was alive when she was taken from the scene.
Because the collision happened on the interstate, Brewer police passed off the investigation to the Maine State Police, Martin said.
State police Trooper Christopher Cookson said Pauline Guimond suffered serious injuries, but he didn’t “dare to say at this point” what her condition was.
The roof of the pickup was crushed, trapping Pauline Guimond. Construction crews, who were at work just yards from the scene of the crash, dropped their work and brought over an excavator and wooden blocks from the work site to lift the truck enough to allow responders to pull the woman free.
An off-duty paramedic from out of state who witnessed the crash also helped the victims, Martin said.
Martin called the construction crews and out-of-state medic a “tremendous help.” He said the victims were “extremely fortunate” that the right resources and people were in that place at that time.
Ronald Guimond sat in the back seat of a Brewer police vehicle at the scene after the crash.
“They say she’s going to make it,” he said. Guimond said the truck’s brakes seized up when he tried to slow down to take the offramp.
“Once all four tires locked up, I was sideways and that’s the last thing I remembered,” he said, putting his head into his hand.
The Guimonds were taken to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor, according to state police. Pauline Guimond was listed in fair condition late Tuesday night, and Ronald Guimond was treated and then released, according to a nursing supervisor at the hospital.
The driver of the Jeep, Robert Yost, 45, of Hampden, was treated at St. Joseph Hospital in Bangor and then released.
A Bangor Police Department accident reconstruction team began investigating the accident Tuesday afternoon, Cookson said.
“I’m not sure who’s at fault here, but it appears one vehicle tried to take the offramp and the collision occurred,” he said. No charges have been filed.
Construction projects on both sides of I-395 have changed traffic patterns in the area near the South Main Street exit. Police would not speculate if the road work contributed to the crash.
After the crash, glass, shoes, a kayak and other debris littered the offramp, shutting it down for several hours. The ramp reopened in the afternoon after cleanup crews finished their work.
Fire and rescue crews from Brewer and Bangor also responded to the call.