At least three people were killed late last night when the car in which they were riding was struck by a flatbed tractor-trailer at the intersection of Route 408 and Sands Road near Wayson's Corner in Lothian, Anne Arundel County police said.
Officer Thomas Wagner, a police spokesman, said the tractor-trailer, which was hauling trash, was westbound on Route 408 about 10:30 p.m. when it broadsided the car, whose driver had stopped at a stop sign and then proceeded into the path of the truck.
"The truck driver had no chance to stop," Officer Wagner said.
He said that after the impact, the tractor-trailer pushed the car in front of it for several yards, until both vehicles struck an embankment.
Officer Wagner said the impact was so great that both vehicles plowed large amounts of dirt in front of them. The car was partially buried, he said.
The occupants of the car were pronounced dead at the scene, Officer Wagner said.
"We know there are two dead people in the front seat and at least one dead person in the back seat," he said.
The driver of the tractor-trailer was slightly injured but refused medical treatment at the scene, Officer Wagner said.
More than an hour after the collision, county fire department rescuers were attempting to untangle both vehicles.
The victims were still trapped in the vehicle at least two hours after the accident, authorities said.
Officer Wagner said the crash scene was one of the worst he had seen in many years.
"The car is totally demolished and buried under a large mound of earth at the foot of an embankment, and we can't even tell what kind of car it is," he said.
Shortly after the crash, several people arrived at the scene and became emotional after recognizing the car.
It is believed that some of them knew the victims, Officer Wagner said.