I-95 southbound lanes reopen after fatal crash near Laurel

A multivehicle crash on I-95 in Maryland closed lanes on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019. (NBC Washington/Brad Freitas)
A multivehicle crash on I-95 in Maryland closed lanes on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019. (NBC Washington/Brad Freitas)
I-95 backup after crash
Traffic on southbound I-95 was at a standstill near the Mile 36 marker. (WTOP/Jenny Glick)
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A multivehicle crash on I-95 in Maryland closed lanes on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019. (NBC Washington/Brad Freitas)
I-95 backup after crash

One person has died after a crash Thursday afternoon on Interstate 95 that shut down part of the highway near Maryland Route 216 in the Laurel area, police said.

It began, Howard County police said, when officers were called to the 9100 block of All Saints Road just before 2:30 p.m. for the report of drug activity in a vehicle.

“However, when the officers began to approach, the driver of the suspect vehicle suddenly accelerated and fled from the scene,” said Sherry Llewellyn, a police spokesperson.

Although police tried to stop him, the driver of that sedan proceeded onto northbound I-95 at 216. Police believe the driver then tried to make a U-turn into the southbound lanes while speeding; the driver lost control and a tractor-trailer hit the vehicle.

The driver and a passenger were taken to a hospital in critical condition. That response required a medevac helicopter landing near the crash site. Police said the driver has now died from the crash injuries. The driver of the tractor-trailer was taken to a hospital with minor injuries, police added.

A third vehicle was run off the road, and that driver was also taken to a hospital with minor injuries.

Effects on the afternoon commute

Police closed I-95 southbound between Maryland routes 32 and 216 as police investigated. Cars that were stuck near the crash site were diverted onto northbound 95, said WTOP Traffic reporter Dave Dildine.

And while the northbound lanes are open, he said, gapers’ delays are slowing down traffic past the crash investigation.

The impact of this crash lasted into the evening and miles away — throughout Howard County, in northern Anne Arundel County and portions of upper Montgomery County. The southbound lanes reopened around 8:30 p.m.

“This is the kind of traffic incident that causes traffic disruptions far and wide and, in some cases, far removed from the incident scene,” Dildine said.

WTOP’s Alicia Abelson contributed to this report.

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