DOVER, N.H. — Unreasonable speed and alcohol were believed to be factors in a crash at the Dover Toll Plaza on the Spaulding Turnpike on Tuesday night, according to New Hampshire State Police.
Amanda Graves, 23, of Dover, was heading north when she lost control of the 2012 Kia Soul she was driving, police said. It struck the concrete barrier at the toll plaza and rolled over. Her vehicle eventually stopped in the middle of the turnpike on its roof after causing extensive damage to the toll booth.
Lt. Steve Lesniak of the Dover Fire Department said the vehicle caught fire because the whole engine block was ripped open during the crash. He said toll plaza workers attempted to put the fire out three times with portable fire extinguishers before it finally stopped burning.
Lesniak said initial reports from the scene indicated two people were inside the vehicle and a woman was trapped but when crews arrived they discovered only Graves in the vehicle. She was not trapped and was responsive when emergency responders arrived, Lesniak said.
Graves suffered injuries that were not life-threatening and was transported to Wentworth-Douglass Hospital, where she was arrested and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol.
A fire engine, rescue squad and ambulance from Dover were at the scene, as well as a state police trooper and workers from the New Hampshire Department of Transportation. The exact change and both E-Z pass lanes were still closed at 8:21 p.m. One of the E-ZPass lanes was reopened by 8:30 p.m. Crews flipped the Kia right side up and began clearing glass and contents of the vehicle from the turnpike.
Lesniak said his crews appreciated drivers who slowed down and moved over so they could do their work.
Trooper Brian Ross with NH State Police Troop A is investigating the crash. Anyone with information about what happened should email him at Brian.Ross@dos.nh.gov.
Distributed by MCT Information Services