From the Portland Press Herald and Morning Sentinel:
Speed cited as main factor in double-fatal accident in Waterville
By GREG LEVINSKY
WATERVILLE — The Maine State Police say that a pickup truck was traveling too fast for conditions when it rolled over a guardrail on Interstate 95 in Waterville on Nov. 25, dropped onto Kennedy Memorial Drive and caught fire, killing a couple from Sanford.
Gary Capehart, 71, was driving and his wife, Susan Pope, 63, was a passenger in their 2003 Chevrolet pickup.
“Driver and passenger were killed on impact due to catastrophic injuries from crash,” Trooper Blake Conrad wrote in the report, which was filed the day after the accident but was only recently made public.
“The vehicle was destroyed due to crash as well as subsequent fire that started.”
The accident occurred at about 10:30 a.m. as Capehart and Pope were traveling northbound on I-95. At the time, it was 20 degrees outside, with roads made slicker by a light snowfall, police said. The speed limit on that stretch of I-95 was down to 45 mph due to the conditions.
The pickup truck was traveling too fast when it struck and then rolled over the overpass guardrail, the accident report said.
The truck fell off the overpass and onto its roof on Kennedy Memorial Drive and rolling a second time.
The truck then caught fire.
Capehart and Pope were killed on impact due to injuries from the accident, the report said.
“The accident on Wednesday had nothing to do with the condition of the bridge,”
Paul Merrill, spokesman for the Maine Department of Transportation, wrote in an email. “The vehicle went completely over the bridge rail leaving only a scratch on the rail. No bridge rail work is required as a result of the accident.”
The bridge was built in 1960, and the deck was last updated in 1989.
Robert A. Skehan, director of the Office of Safety at the Maine DOT, said there have been few accidents on the I-95 bridge over Kennedy Memorial Drive.
Greg Levinsky — 207-621-5623