UNITY TOWNSHIP, Maine — Police said that the 59-year-old woman who died Monday afternoon in a head-on collision on the Waterville Road was Donna Jackson of Knox.
Tyler Brackett, 29, of Sidney apparently crossed the centerline in his pickup truck and hit Jackson’s 2005 Chevy Cavalier at about 2 p.m. She was pronounced dead at the scene of injuries caused by blunt force trauma, according to Chief Deputy Ryan Reardon of the Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office.
She had been driving her mother, Lilla Jackson, 83, and either her sister or sister-in-law, Denice Jackson, 55, both of Unity, Reardon said Tuesday. Jackson’s passengers and Brackett were injured in the crash, with each person transported to a different area hospital for treatment.
Reardon said that driver distraction caused the accident.
“Brackett had a dog in the cab of the truck with him that apparently jumped into his lap, causing him to lose control of the vehicle,” the chief deputy said. “There was no intent. No ill regard. It was a simple thing that ended up causing the accident, with tragic consequences.”
He said that Lilla Jackson was taken to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor for treatment, primarily because first responders were concerned about her age. Denice Jackson complained of back and neck pain and was taken to the Thayer Campus of MaineGeneral Medical Center in Waterville. Reardon did not know what hospital treated Brackett for his non-threatening injuries.
The dog in the truck was picked up by one of Brackett’s family friends, Reardon said.
He noted that each person involved in the accident was wearing a seatbelt, and airbags deployed in both vehicles. The accident is being reconstructed by Deputy Jeremy Day, and it remains under investigation, the chief deputy said.