GARDINER — A man died Friday afternoon after the sport utility vehicle he was driving veered off U.S. Route 201, struck rock ledge and flipped into a metal building.

No one else was in the car and there were no other injuries, police said.

The man, who was not identified by police pending notification of family, died at the scene. It’s unclear why the vehicle drifted off the road, but the preliminary indication is that the man experienced a medical problem while driving, according to Gardiner Police Chief James Toman.

The crash happened about 3:47 p.m. as the man drove his Jeep Liberty north on U.S. 201. The vehicle crossed the center line, hit an outcropping of rock ledge on the other side and caromed into the Maine Drilling and Blasting building, landing on its side. No one was in the building when the crash happened, Toman said.

The outside metal wall of the building was crushed, causing an estimated $38,000-$40,000 in damages, Toman said.

Maine State Police, Gardiner fire and rescue and Gardiner police all responded. That portion of U.S. 201 was closed to traffic until about 5:15 p.m.


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