Elderly Peru woman rescued from Jeep rollover into Carthage brook

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CARTHAGE — An elderly Peru woman was rescued from her overturned Jeep in Basin Brook off Route 142 on Tuesday night.

Maine State Police Trooper Keith Barton declined to identify the 88-year-old woman, citing the potential severity of her injuries to her chest and back. She was taken by Med-Care Ambulance to Rumford Hospital.

Barton said the accident happened at about 7:30 p.m. near 837 Carthage Road, also called Route 142. The location is known locally as Basin Brook Curve, Carthage firefighters said.

Barton said the woman was driving east toward Dixfield from Weld when she lost control of a 1999 Jeep Cherokee while heading into the curve. The Jeep slid sideways off the road and through a snowbank before rolling over onto the roof and coming to rest with the front end of the Jeep in Basin Brook 20 feet down from the road and pointed toward the nearby Webb River.

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Barton said she was driving too fast for the icy road conditions but not at a high speed.

“There was a fine mist and fog and that freezes up on the road really quick and can definitely shock people,” he said. “She was lucky.”

Carthage and Weld firefighters, Med-Care, and Rumford firefighters with their air bag extrication equipment were called to the scene initially because a dispatcher radioed that the woman was pinned in the brook underneath the Jeep.

But when Carthage fire Chief Dan Skidgell arrived, he said the woman wasn’t pinned, but was in shock and trying to get out.

“She was conscious and on her hands and knees trying to get out and she was in shock and kept hitting her back on the window frame,” Skidgell said. “I told her to lay down and she did and she said, ‘Drag me out!'”

He said he was worried about keeping her head and neck stabilized, but he dragged her out and got her up the snowbank and into his truck to try and warm her up until the ambulance crew arrived.

Because she had been extricated, Rumford firefighters were canceled.

Neither Skidgell nor Trooper Barton knew who called Franklin County Dispatch in Farmington to advise them of the accident, but Skidgell said there was so much snow in the road, any passerby would likely have stopped to check and seen the Jeep upsidedown in the brook.

Firefighters restricted traffic to one lane while Bob Riley, owner of M/T Pockets garage and towing, pulled the Jeep back to the road on its side and hauled it off.

tkarkos@sunjournal.com

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