Westbrook police said a 22-year-old man was killed when his car left the road near the Spring Street bridge Sunday morning, went airborne and landed on the ice-covered Stroudwater River.

Police Chief Janine Roberts identified the victim as Fouad Abdullah of Westbrook. Roberts said the rear end of Abdullah’s car was spotted protruding from the river by a passer-by, who notified police by calling 9-1-1.

Roberts told reporters at the accident scene that Abdullah’s vehicle – a black 2011 Chevrolet Cruze – appeared to have been headed inbound from South Portland when it crossed the centerline, hit a guardrail and went airborne.

Roberts said the four-door sedan passed between a stand of trees and a utility pole before landing on the ice-covered river. The car rolled over and came to rest on its roof before sinking through the ice.

Abdullah was a table tennis champion in Maine and was a member of the Iraqi national team.

Fouad Abdullah, shown in 2014, quickly became known for his considerable table-tennis skills when he emigrated to Maine from Iraq.

Fouad Abdullah, shown in 2014, quickly became known for his considerable table-tennis skills when he emigrated to Maine from Iraq. Press Herald File Photo/Gregory Rec

An autopsy will be conducted by the state Medical Examiner’s Office to determine the cause of death, Roberts said.

The car was partially submerged in the river off Spring Street when it was discovered around 11:30 a.m. Sunday.

The accident shut down Spring Street for several hours while emergency workers cleared the scene.

Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:

[email protected]

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