Greencastle, Pa., 18-year-old killed in I-81 accident

September 13, 2012
  • PennDOT cameras show the scene at mile marker 3 on Interstate 81 in Pennsylvania.
PennDOT cameras show the scene at mile marker 3 on Interstate 81 in Pennsylvania.

STATE LINE, Pa. — An 18-year-old Greencastle, Pa., woman was killed Thursday morning in a three-vehicle crash involving a tractor-trailer on southbound Interstate 81 about 2 1/2 miles north of the Maryland state line, according to Pennsylvania State Police.

Ayron P. Metcalf was pronounced dead at the scene of the 11 a.m. crash, Franklin County Coroner Jeffrey R. Conner said in a news release.

Metcalf was southbound on I-81 when her vehicle collided with a tractor-trailer, then traveled through the median and collided with a northbound vehicle before rolling several times, police said. 

Both northbound and southbound lanes of I-81 in Antrim Township were closed after the crash and police kept the lanes closed for more than six hours to accommodate interviews of witnesses, measurements of skid marks and debris, and a full inspection of the tractor-trailer for things like brake functions, Pennsylvania State Police Trooper Ed Asbury said.

Closing of the lanes clogged I-81 traffic and backups extended south into West Virginia, police in Washington County said.

Maryland State Highway Administration spokesman David Buck said northbound I-81 traffic in Maryland was diverted off the interstate at Exit 10A (Showalter Road) to U.S. 11 as a way to assist in the traffic backup. Traffic signal timing was altered to allow more green time for traffic moving north, Buck said.

Traffic was snarled on U.S. 11 and Greencastle Pike in Washington County as a result of the crash, police said.

Police said speed was not believed to have been a factor in the crash.

“The investigation wasn’t clear cut as to the first chain of events that led to what happened,” Asbury said of the collision between the car and tractor-trailer.

Investigators quickly learned the car crossed the median and was hit by a northbound pickup truck, Asbury said.

The car “was kind of (facing) head-on somewhat in the northbound lanes. That was after rolling,” he said.

The driver of the pickup truck was taken to Meritus Medical Center for minor injuries, according to Asbury.

Pennsylvania State Police had been conducting a speeding enforcement detail in the area, but Asbury said it ended about a half-hour before the crash.

Staff writers Jennifer Fitch, Julie E. Greene, C.J. Lovelace and Dave McMillion contributed to this story.

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