A crash between a motorcycle and a large truck has shut down the exit 109 on-ramp for Interstate 95 on Wednesday morning.
AUGUSTA — A Hallowell man died Wednesday morning when he lost control of a motorcycle while exiting Interstate 95, and his bike struck a tractor-trailer, Maine State Police said.
Edward Lingley, 33, was killed instantly, said Steve McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of a Public Safety, in a news release Wednesday afternoon.
The crash was reported just before 8 a.m. on the section of ramp that brings people to Interstate 95 south, and shutdown the ramp for two-and-a-half hours.
It was the latest fatal crash in what’s been a deadly year on Maine roads, and a deadly couple months, according to data from the Maine Bureau of Highway Safety that McCausland provided.
From August to September, 45 people have died in traffic accidents in Maine, according to the Bureau. And the state’s overall highway death toll this year is 123, up 17 percent from the 105 reported during the same period in 2016.
The Wednesday morning crash also brought the eighth motorcycle death this month on Maine roads, bumping the total number of statewide motorcycle deaths this year to 19. It came on the heels of a Sept. 10 crash on Interstate 95 in Augusta that killed two motorcyclists who were participating in the United Bikers of Maine Toy Run.
On Wednesday, investigators found that speed was a factor in Lingley’s crash, which did not injure the driver of the other vehicle.
“Lingley was traveling too fast as he exited Interstate 95,” McCausland said. “The bike slid on a sharp curve, and then struck the trailer portion of a tractor-trailer in the opposite lane.”
The long-haul truck was carrying an empty flatbed trailer. It was operated by Joseph Forsey, 43, of Shelbyville, Indiana.
The on-ramp closure came during many people’s morning commutes. A heavy layer of fog covered that section of highway, and all entrances to Interstate 95 from Western Avenue were closed.
Soon after the crash was reported, members of the Maine State Police had parked their cruisers along busy Western Avenue, which is also U.S. Route 202, and were directing drivers away from the on-ramps. The fog blocked any views of the accident scene.