Man dies after car swerves from Interstate 95 in northern Penobscot County

Posted Aug. 19, 2013, at 3:48 p.m.
Last modified Aug. 19, 2013, at 5:59 p.m.

TOWNSHIP 1, RANGE 6, Maine — An unidentified man died at Eastern Maine Medical Center after his rented car swerved from Interstate 95 and crashed near mile marker 251 on Monday, state police said.

The man was headed north in a Honda Civic sedan when his car swerved to the right slightly, then wheeled left into the center median at about 10:35 a.m., state police Trooper Chris Foxworthy said.

“A witness saw it go off the road,” Foxworthy said. “I am assuming at this point that the man had a medical problem or fell asleep behind the wheel.”

The state medical examiner’s office will, if possible, make a determination as to a cause of death, Foxworthy said.

Radio reports indicated that East Millinocket’s ambulance took the man as far as I-95’s mile marker 211 in Edinburg before transferring him to a LifeFlight helicopter for transport to EMMC.

East Millinocket fire Capt. Peter Larlee said he was unaware of the circumstances surrounding the incident. He referred comment to Chief Les Brown, who was handling an ambulance call and did not immediately return a telephone message seeking comment.

LifeFlight Director Tom Judge said a LifeFlight helicopter met the ambulance in the Edinburg area because it couldn’t meet them farther up the road. Monday was a crushingly busy day for the two-helicopter medevac service, he said.

Both helicopters handled calls in Bangor, Calais, Dartmouth, Fort Kent, Harrington, Machias, Rumford and Waterville, among other places. The service also handled two trips from Bangor to Boston, he said.

“We just could not keep up today, which is why we are in the process of adding a third helicopter,” Judge said Monday.

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