For the second time in just over a week, a Maine State Trooper has been injured when his cruiser was struck from behind while parked in a breakdown lane of the Maine Turnpike.

Trooper Ryan Keller was parked at mile 70 in New Gloucester, on the northbound side of the highway, when the crash happened around 5:30 p.m. Friday, said Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.

The cruiser’s emergency lights were activated.

“Keller was pulled over to observe icing conditions on the turnpike and report back to turnpike maintenance to send sand trucks to the area,” McCausland said.

A car driven by Nancy Colson, 22, of Topsham, struck the rear of the cruiser and pushed it into a guardrail, McCausland said. Both Keller and Colson were taken to Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries.

The cruiser, a Ford Explorer, was demolished in the wreck. Keller has been a state trooper for 18 years.

The crash took place in the same area where Trooper John Davis was injured when his cruiser was struck from behind by a tractor-trailer shortly after 5 a.m. on Dec. 21.

Davis had responded to a report of two cars off the road and was parked in the breakdown lane with the cruiser’s emergency lights activated. He also was treated for non-life-threatening injuries at CMMC.

McCausland noted that Maine’s so-called “move over” law requires motorists to move into the next travel lane when police cruiser, fire truck, ambulance or wrecker lights are activated. The law is designed to give emergency personnel additional room to work safely, he said.

 

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