MEXICO – Although police responded to a slew of crashes Tuesday morning because of icy road conditions, most damage was to the vehicles and not people.

Police Chief Jim Theriault said two accidents involving four vehicles occurred within minutes and yards of each other along Route 2 between Wal-Mart and the intersection with Highland Terrace shortly after 9 a.m.

About $1,000 damage was done to a 1997 Ford pickup truck driven by Robert McPherson, 34, of Pine Street, when he lost control of on an ice pack and slammed into a snowbank. The vehicle behind him, a 1999 Ford sedan driven by Elizabeth Barker, 30, of Strong ran into the truck, causing $1,500 in damage to her vehicle. She was unable to stop due to ice.

Two other crashes occurred within minutes of each other just east of the first two, also on Route 2. Susan O’Leary, 46, of Peru slowed her 2000 GMC sports utility vehicle for the first two accidents when Bertha Horne, 91, of Dixfield failed to see her slow and slammed her 1998 Ford sedan into the back of the SUV. The SUV sustained $1,200 damage and O’Leary was taken to Rumford Hospital by Med-Care Ambulance Service. She was treated and released.

Horne’s Ford sustained $2,500 in damage.

At about the same time, at the intersection of Roxbury Road and Main Street, Mark Henry, 39, of Rainbow Lane, Roxbury, slid his 2004 Toyota SUV into the back of a 2002 Ford pickup truck driven by Joan Lavorgna, 41, of Swift River Road in Byron. The Toyota sustained $2,000 damage, while Lavorgna’s pickup sustained $500 damage.

Another two-car crash occurred around 10 a.m. near the Mobil Station on Main Street when a 1998 Ford pickup driven by Arthur Chappelle, 40, of Pine Street, hit a 2000 Toyota sedan driven by Jacqueline Fish, 64, of Sagadahoc Avenue, when she slowed to turn into the gas station. Chappelle’s pickup sustained $1,500 damage, while Fish’s sedan sustained $1,000 damage.

In a separate incident, Linwood Swett, 53, of Hallowell, was arrested on a charge of operating under the influence about 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9, following a rollover accident on Route 17.

Theriault said Swett was driving north when he lost control of his 2001 Dodge Dakota pickup truck, slammed into snowbank and rolled over.

At first, authorities thought the accident occurred in Roxbury so Roxbury Fire Chief Raymond Carver went to the scene.

Swett was thrown out of the truck and was out of sight behind a snowbank when law enforcement arrived. He sustained cuts, and Mexico officer Dustin Broughton took Swett to the hospital where he was treated, then taken to the Oxford County Jail.

He is scheduled to appear in 11th District Court, Northern Oxford Division, on April 8.


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