STEVENSVILLE - A Chester man and a Salisbury man died and a third is in stable condition at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma in three separate incidents at the William Preston Lane Jr. Memorial (Bay) Bridge in which they went into the Chesapeake Bay during a five-hour period on Monday.
About 10:30 a.m., 70-year-old Harry Blauvelt of Chester got out of his stalled Honda in the right lane of the center span of the two-lane bridge. His car was rear-ended by a 2003 International truck driven by Enos Hutton Sage of Severn and pushed into him, knocking Blauvelt 52.5 feet into the Chesapeake Bay, according to Sgt. Jonathan Green of the Maryland Transportation Authority Police.
Blauvelt was pulled from the Bay by an MdTA Police boat and taken to Anne Arundel Medical Center in Annapolis by the Anne Arundel County Fire Department. He was pronounced dead at the medical center Monday afternoon, Green said.
Blauvelt was a retired USA Today sportswriter.
Sage, the driver of the truck, had minor injuries and refused medical treatment at the scene.
A 21-year-old man jumped from the center span of the three-lane bridge about 12:30 p.m. Monday in an apparent suicide attempt, said AACFD Division Chief Michael Cox.
The man's 2008 Toyota was abandoned near marker 34.6, a height of 180 feet from the roadway to the water, Green said.
The victim was recovered from the Bay by MdTA Police and flown to University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore by Maryland State Police helicopter, where he remains in stable condition, Green said.
The body of a third man, age 38, of Salisbury, was recovered from the Bay near the bridge after apparently jumping about 3:30 p.m. Monday. He was pronounced dead at 4:40 p.m. at AAMC. He dropped from the three-lane span of the bridge at marker 34 and fell 180 feet to the water, Green said.
Sandra Elizabeth Crutchley of Centreville, a witness to the first incident, suffered a medical emergency unrelated to the accident and was taken to Queen Anne's Emergency Center in Grasonville, where she was treated and released, Green said.
Monday was the deadliest day on the Bay Bridge since May 2007, when Randy and Jonathan Orff of Crumpton and James H. Ingle of Preston were killed and five others injured in a crash caused by a loose trailer.
The incidents created a substantial traffic delay in both directions from mid-morning into the afternoon. After the first accident, the two-lane span of the bridge was closed until almost 2 p.m., with two-way operation implemented on the three-lane span. At one point, traffic was backed up more than four miles eastbound and about two miles, back to Castle Marina Road, westbound, according to 1-877-BAYSPAN.