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State bridge official to assess damage to Funkstown bridge caused by accident

February 25, 2013
  • A Maryland State Highway Administration bridge official will be on hand Tuesday to check on a Funkstown bridge damaged in a car accident Sunday.
File photo

A Maryland State Highway Administration bridge official Tuesday will check the damage to an historic Funkstown bridge that had a portion of a wall knocked out Sunday after a car hit the bridge, a state highway spokeswoman said.

Details about the repairs needed, including whether at least one lane of the two-lane bridge over Antietam Creek can remain open during repairs, will be determined after a bridge official evaluates the damage, state highway spokeswoman Heather Keels said Monday.

“It’s a historic bridge and so it has to be restored that way,” Keels said.

Joshua Harrison Gettleman, 24, of Hagerstown, sustained life-threatening injuries in the crash, Washington County Sheriff Douglas W. Mullendore said Sunday night. Gettleman, the driver of the car that hit the bridge, was taken to Meritus Medical Center.

In the last update Deputy 1st Class Carly Hose, the sheriff’s office spokeswoman had, Gettleman was still at the hospital late Monday morning, she said.

The cause of the accident was not available, Hose said Monday afternoon.

Washington County Emergency Services, the 911 dispatch center, received multiple calls about the accident, which was first reported at 12:55 a.m. Sunday, a 911 supervisor said Monday.

The car was heading into Funkstown on Alternate U.S. 40 when it hit the bridge’s east wall, a portion made of stone, Funkstown Fire Chief David “Buck” Fraley has said. The car bounced off the wall, hit a concrete post further up North Westside Avenue and ended up by a red brick house at the corner of North Westside Avenue and West Chestnut Street, Fraley said.

State highway officials placed temporary concrete barriers on the bridge Sunday morning to block the hole created by the accident, Fraley said.

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— Julie E. Greene

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