May 30, 2020

Tragedy Outside Loring> Concert-goers hurt in I-95 rollover; 1 critical

OAKFIELD — Three people en route to the Phish concert in Limestone were injured Sunday morning, one critically, when their car went off Interstate 95 and rolled over.

Brian Lox, 17, of Marstons Mills, Mass., who state police said was the driver of the 1988 Saab, was the most seriously injured. He was taken to Houlton Regional Hospital before being transferred to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor.

A spokeswoman at EMMC said Sunday afternoon that Lox’s condition was critical.

Also taken to Houlton Regional Hospital were passengers Kimberly Condon, 17, of Hubbardston, Mass., and Tara Martinez, 22, of Old Lyme, Conn.

Condon underwent surgery at Houlton for unspecified injuries. She and Martinez were in stable condition, a hospital spokesperson said Sunday afternoon.

The accident occurred at about 6:45 a.m. as the trio was northbound on Interstate 95, about 15 miles south of Houlton. Police said they were headed for the Phish concert.

As of Sunday afternoon, state police had not determined an official cause of the accident, but a witness reported the car had been traveling at high speed just minutes before the crash.

“I saw them fly past me about two minutes [before the crash],” said a New York man who came upon the accident. He did not want to give his name. “They must have been doing 90.

“They weren’t wearing seat belts,” said the man, who appeared upset as he walked up an embankment near the crash site. “If they had been, they probably could have walked away from it.”

State police Trooper Anita Levesque said that although Lox apparently was driving when the accident occurred, Martinez was driving at 12:45 a.m. Sunday when state police stopped the car for speeding in Yarmouth.

The car is owned by Martinez’s father, David, also of Old Lyme, Conn.

An accident reconstructionist from the Houlton Police Department was working with state police to determine how the crash occurred.

According to Sgt. Maurice Ellis, the car went off the left side of the road and traveled about 335 feet in the grass along the edge, before it came back onto the paved surface. At that point, he said, the car was facing south.

After the car went back onto the road, Ellis said, it rolled over three times on the pavement before it went off the right side of the road and rolled over at least three more times. It ended up about 75 feet down an embankment on its wheels, near the woods and facing south.

When the car went off the right side of the road, the three people were ejected, said police.

Lox and Martinez were found up the embankment closer to the road and about 25 feet from where the car came to rest. Condon was found along the edge of the woods on the other side of the car.

Rescue workers were slightly delayed in getting to the accident scene because of inaccurate directions. Initially, the accident was reported to be a short distance north of the Smyrna interchange, which is about four miles north of where it actually was.

After reaching Smyrna, the first ambulance dispatched from Houlton headed north on the highway. When the correct location was learned minutes later, the ambulance had to continue north on I-95 until a crossover could be found and it could go back to the correct accident site.

A total of three ambulances and the Houlton Fire Department rescue squad responded.

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