Police: Driver in Route 196 crash was trying to use cell phone

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TOPSHAM – Preliminary investigation into a Topsham crash on Monday afternoon that resulted in a three-hour road closure indicates that the driver, Sara LaFlamme, 29, of Topsham, was attempting to use her cell phone at the time of the crash, police Sgt. Christopher Lewis said.

LaFlamme was traveling west on Route 196, a major corridor between Lewiston-Auburn and the Midcoast area, near Whorff’s Pit, when her SUV veered off the right shoulder, struck and snapped a Verizon pole head-on, pulling down CMP, Verizon and Comcast lines across busy Route 196.

The road was closed to through traffic for three hours while a new pole was set and lines repaired, Sgt. Lewis said. Westbound traffic was rerouted over Meadow Cross Road in Topsham while eastbound traffic was rerouted by Lisbon police through Summer Street in Lisbon Falls.

LaFlamme was taken to Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston by Lisbon emergency. She was treated for minor injuries and released, Lewis said. Damage was estimated at between $5,000 and $8,000 to her 2000 Ford Explorer in the 12:42 p.m. crash.

Officials are waiting for cost related to replacing the pole. No charges were filed.

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