Belfast doctor dragged and pinned by his truck in accident

Posted Feb. 09, 2012, at 5:34 p.m.

BELFAST, Maine — Rescue workers used the Jaws of Life on Thursday afternoon to extricate a Belfast doctor from beneath a vehicle that had dragged and then trapped him.

Dr. Harry Richter, who works at Waldo County General Hospital in Belfast, had been driving home with his teenage daughter when he parked the car in his Bayview Street driveway at about 3 p.m., according to Belfast Police Chief Mike McFadden.

Richter, whose age was not immediately available, stepped out of the pickup truck for a moment, and his daughter decided to shut off the engine. But the truck had not been shifted into park, McFadden said, and began to roll backward toward the street.

“He rushed back to put it in park, and was dragged across the street,” the chief said.

The vehicle came to a halt on the front lawn of a neighbor’s house, and Richter was pinned under the front suspension, though not under a tire.

“He was able to breathe,” McFadden said.

A Belfast Ambulance crew was able to get the truck off Richter, who was taken to Waldo County General Hospital for treatment.

When he was taken away, the doctor was able to talk with police and rescuers, McFadden said.

“We were able to ask how much pain he was in,” the chief said.

His daughter suffered bumps and bruises in the incident because she tried to jump out of the truck while it was in motion, he said.

Richter was being transferred to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor for treatment Thursday afternoon, according to an official at Waldo County General Hospital. No further details were available.

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