Heart attack may have caused truck crash


A Rockville man driving a dump truck loaded with asphalt may have suffered a heart attack as he crashed near a southeast Carroll industrial park yesterday, state police reported.

Police identified the man as Donald Eugene Crown, 56, a driver for Travilah Trucking Co. in Rockville. He was pronounced dead at Carroll County General Hospital shortly after the 7:45 a.m. crash northwest of Route 97.

Police said Mr. Crown had just loaded 40,000 pounds of asphalt at a manufacturing plant on Kabik Court and had driven north toward Hoods Mill Road when witnesses saw the truck pull to the shoulder.

A following truck driver said he thought Mr. Crown's vehicle was going stop, but Mr. Crown's truck continued for nearly 200 feet, knocked down a tree and started to climb an embankment before it came to rest, Trooper Michael Duears said.

Police said the collision uprooted the tree. Its roots wedged under the rear axle of the truck and stopped it. The truck's drive wheels continued spinning until one of the truckers behind ran to the vehicle and turned the engine off.

Several truck drivers who saw the crash pulled Mr. Crown from behind the wheel and administered cardiopulmonary resuscitation until medics arrived from the Sykesville fire station.

The truck drivers told state police that they believed Mr. Crown had suffered a heart attack about the time he pulled off the road, because he was clutching his chest when they found him in his vehicle.

Mr. Crown's only visible external injury was a minor laceration on his cheek, Trooper Duears said.

The body was sent to the medical examiner's office in Baltimore for an autopsy.

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