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Worker from Abingdon killed along I-95 near Havre de Grace Thursday

Southbound traffic from Cecil County into Harford County on I-95 is backed up in a Maryland Transportation Authority camera view Wednesday afternoon, following an accident near the Route 155 interchange in Havre de Grace. A man working with a mowing crew along the highway was fatally struck by an SUV.
Southbound traffic from Cecil County into Harford County on I-95 is backed up in a Maryland Transportation Authority camera view Wednesday afternoon, following an accident near the Route 155 interchange in Havre de Grace. A man working with a mowing crew along the highway was fatally struck by an SUV. (Baltimore Sun Media Group)

A Maryland Transportation Authority employee was killed while working along I-95 near Havre de Grace Thursday afternoon, causing back-ups of up to eight miles for southbound traffic traveling from Cecil County into Harford County, Maryland State Police reported.

Michael Pearce, 59, of the 600-block of Baker Avenue in Abingdon, was struck at about 1 p.m. by a 2003 Ford E-150 van while he was working with a mowing crew in a grassy area along the highway, according to a State Police news release.

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Pearce was pronounced dead at the scene by Harford County emergency medical personnel. Police said he was a faculties maintenance technician with MdTA.

The driver of the van, Corey Ness, 54, of Spring Grove, Pa., was taken to Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center in Baltimore, State Police said. Ness' condition was not provided by police.

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Troopers from the JFK Highway Barrack and MdTA are investigating why Ness' vehicle left the road and traveled into the right shoulder and Route 155 overpass, hitting the back of a stopped dump truck before striking the victim, according State Police.

Rescue and EMS crews were initially dispatched to milepost 89, just north of the Route 155 overpass, for a motor vehicle accident "with ejection," according to monitored Harford County emergency radio broadcasts. A short time later, responding units advised there were "multiple" patients and one had suffered "trauma arrest."

There were other members of the mowing crew at the scene when the crash occurred, none of whom was injured, State Police said. There has been no determination made of the vehicle speed.

MdTA closed the two right of three southbound travel lanes and the exit ramp to Route 155. The accident occurred about a mile and a half from the Millard Tydings Bridge over the Susquehanna River.

At 4 p.m., State Police said they expected the closures to continue for several hours. MdTA cameras showed the backup extended across the southbound side of the bridge and well into Cecil County just south of the Route 272 exit at North East.

The cause of the crash is under investigation and charges are pending, State Police said.

Anyone with information or who may have witnessed the accident is asked to call Maryland State Police JFK Highway Barrack at 410-537-1150.

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