Car crashes through Unity fence; cable TV show host critically hurt


UNITY (AP) – A stock car accident at Unity Raceway has critically injured a photographer who hosts a cable television show on auto racing.

Johnny Crawford was transported by helicopter to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor with head and chest injuries following the late Sunday afternoon accident in which a car went airborne and crashed through a chain-link fence, landing on top of him.

Crawford, 38, of Fairfield, was taking photographs and video of the race from a non-spectator area of the track. A former manager of the Unity Raceway, he is host of the Mainely Motorsports TV show and president of Mainely Motorsports Television.

The driver of the car and one of Crawford’s co-workers were also injured in crash.

Racetrack owner Ralph Nason said the accident occurred when two cars got together on the front stretch. Bystanders told the Morning Sentinel of Waterville that the car driven by Chris Staples of Brunswick rammed the car of Mark Dodge of Anson, driving it through the fence where Crawford was videotaping the race.

The driver initially declined medical treatment, but was transported to a Pittsfield hospital after he began to feel ill, the Waldo County Sheriff’s Department said.

Kim Cameron, 40, of Benton, described as an associate of Crawford, was treated at a Waterville hospital. A second co-worker was in shock but was able to walk away from the scene.