Biker injured in downtown Lincoln crash

Posted July 16, 2011, at 2:37 p.m.
Last modified July 17, 2011, at 5:42 p.m.

LINCOLN, Maine — A Lincoln man was released from Penobscot Valley Hospital after he suffered head and leg injuries when he was thrown partly through a pickup truck window in a collision at Main Street and West Broadway, police said Saturday.

Wayne Cole, 26, was probably fortunate to have chosen to wear a motorcycle helmet, Officer Jeffrey Rice said.

“It appears that his head went through the window of the [truck] cab,” Rice said Saturday. “He had a gash on his forehead or nose, and without that helmet I think the injuries would have been a lot more severe.”

Cole was on West Broadway traveling on his 1981 Honda motorcycle toward the Main Street intersection when a 1995 Ford F-150 pickup truck pulled in front of him from the area between Rite Aid and High Tech Auto at about 11:15 a.m. Friday, Rice and witnesses said.

“The truck was doing a rolling stop, or more of a yield,” said Mark Montgomery, a mechanic at High Tech Auto at 12 West Broadway who witnessed the accident.

“The thing [pickup truck] rolled right out in front of him [the motorcyclist], and he had nowhere to go. His back wheels locked up and he went down and T-boned the truck.”

“I would say, judging by the cut on his face, that he is probably lucky to be alive,” said repair shop owner Mike Montgomery, Mark Montgomery’s father.

The Montgomerys rushed to the accident scene and helped Cole, spreading rags on the ground near the motorcycle where it had begun to leak a fairly large amount of gasoline, Mike Montgomery said.

The pickup truck’s driver, Robert MacDonald, 73, of Burlington, was cited for failure to yield on entering a public way, a misdemeanor. He was released on a promise to appear in District Court in Lincoln on Aug. 16.

MacDonald appeared either to have not seen the motorcycle or to have rolled through the stop sign between the two businesses, Rice said.

The Main Street-West Broadway intersection has a history of accidents like this one, Mike Montgomery said.

A recent traffic count indicated that 12,000 vehicles use the intersection daily, a large number in comparison to Lincoln’s population — about 5,200, according to the last census — but not so vast given that the intersection connects Routes 2, 6 and 155. Those roads run through Enfield, Howland, Lee, Mattawamkeag and Bangor, among other communities.

“It seems to be a place where little mishaps occur,” Mike Montgomery said. “There are a lot of little outs here where people can get into traffic, as you can see, and it’s very busy.”