AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) -- A pre-winter coating of black ice on northern New England roads and highways caused several traffic accidents and at least three deaths on Friday.
In Alton, a 90-minute drive northeast of Augusta, an SUV hit black ice in foggy conditions on a bridge on Friday morning, causing it to crash into a tree, roll over and burst into flames along Interstate 95, killing a woman and seriously injuring her boyfriend. The driver, 24-year-old Jesi Rai Burleigh, of Lincoln, died, and her boyfriend, 38-year-old Anthony Dupuis, of Greenbush, was hospitalized.
Black ice also was blamed for an accident early Thursday morning on Route 108 near the Peru-Rumford town line: A car hit a patch of black ice, went out of control and crashed, ejecting driver Jake Pomeroy, of Dixfield, and killing him. In Hermon, a pickup truck hit a patch of black ice, left the road and rolled over late Thursday, killing a mother and injuring her daughter. The driver, Retha Thomas, 50, died. Her daughter, Brooke Thomas-Soper, 18, sustained non-life threatening injuries.