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80-year-old Florida woman dies after I-81 vehicle rollover

Two others hurt in two more I-81 accidents

July 31, 2012|By C.J. LOVELACE | cj.lovelace@herald-mail.com
  • A Maryland State Police trooper looks inside a vehicle that rolled down an embankment Tuesday after a fatal two-vehicle accident in the southbound lane of Interstate 81 south of the Maryland-Pennsylvania state line.
By Ric Dugan, Staff Photographer

An 80-year-old Florida woman died at Meritus Medical Center early Tuesday evening after a two-vehicle rollover crash in the southbound lanes of Interstate 81 near Hagerstown Regional Airport, according to Maryland State Police.

Clara Magdelan Stankiewicz, of Crystal River, was pronounced dead at 5:43 p.m., state police said in a news release.

Clara Stankiewicz was the passenger in a 2011 Cadillac SRX, driven by Stanley Stankiewicz, 83, that was struck by a 2008 Ford Edge merging onto the highway just south of exit 1 as the interstate enters Maryland, police said.

The Stankiewiczes were transported to Meritus by ambulance, police said.

Stanley Stankiewicz was in stable condition with nonlife-threatening injuries, a trooper at the Hagerstown barrack said Tuesday night.

The driver of the Ford, Brandon Scott Martz, 20, of Hagerstown, was uninjured, police said.

The accident was reported at 3:01 p.m., a Washington County Emergency Services dispatcher said.

After getting on the interstate, Martz made an unsafe lane change and moved into the path of the Cadillac, causing the Ford to turn sideways as both drivers lost control, police said.

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The Cadillac then left the roadway and rolled over several times, ending up on its side in a wooded area off to the right, Trooper 1st Class JR Bowers said.

The southbound lanes were closed for about two hours while crews cleaned up the accident and police conducted their investigation.

Police said all occupants were wearing seat belts, and there was no indication that drugs or alcohol were a factor in the crash.

Bowers reminded all drivers to be cautious as they merge onto the busy interstate.

“People coming off the merge area have to be careful and make sure they look numerous times before they come into traffic,” he said. “Any type of merge area, you need to make sure you check your mirrors, as well as look back and make sure there’s no traffic coming, to make it safe.”

Almost simultaneously, two other accidents were reported on I-81, one near Halfway Boulevard and the other near Greencastle, Pa.

An accident involving a motorcycle and a truck was reported at about 3:26 p.m. in the northbound lanes between mile markers four and five in Maryland, a Washington County Emergency Services dispatcher said.

The motorcycle rider was taken to Meritus Medical Center with unknown injuries.

Emergency crews cleared the scene by about 4:50 p.m., the dispatcher said.

About 10 miles north, crews in Greencastle responded to a three-vehicle collision near exit 5 of I-81 southbound at about 3:47 p.m., according to the Franklin County (Pa.) 911 Center.

One person was transported to a hospital for injuries, the dispatcher said.

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