Alcohol is believed to have been a factor in an early morning crash Sunday on Interstate 95 that sent a Waterville woman and three others to the hospital.

Merranda LaChance, 23, of Waterville, who was a passenger in the Jeep Grand Cherokee, was one of four people taken to MaineGeneral Medical Center in Augusta with numerous injuries, none of which were believed to be serious, said Trooper Blake Conrad of the Maine State Police.

A hospital spokeswoman said all four were treated at the hospital and discharged. She could not say whether any had been transferred to another hospital.

Michael Willey, 23, of Lewiston, was driving the Jeep north around 3:45 a.m. Sunday when the sport utility vehicle left the road near mile 124. Conrad said the Jeep drifted toward the median after Willey fell asleep.

“They tried to wake him up, but it was too late,” Conrad said.

The Jeep left the road and rolled over several times in the median before coming to a rest on its roof, Conrad said. The Jeep was crushed in the crash.

“They were all able to climb out the front passenger side door,” Blake said.

Lewiston residents Frank LeMay, 43, who was in the front passenger seat, and Jessica Williams, 25, who was sitting with LaChance in back, also were taken to the hospital.

Conrad said the group was returning from a concert at Shenanigans bar in Augusta. Police took a sample of Willey’s blood to test for substances that would trigger an operating under the influence charge. Conrad said the crash was apparently caused by fatigue and alcohol.

“Charges for OUI are pending blood kit results,” he said.

The section of Interstate 95 was reduced to one lane as crews tended to the injured and removed the car.

Conrad said all four people were apparently wearing a seat belt, which likely saved their lives.

“I am shocked nobody died in this accident,” he said.

Craig Crosby — 621-5642

[email protected]

Twitter: @CraigCrosby4


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