Fatal crash closes northbound I-95

A southbound FedEx truck hauling tandem trailers on Interstate 95 in Glynn County crossed over the median and into northbound traffic early Monday morning, setting in motion a crash that killed a Fernandina Beach man, according to the Georgia State Patrol.

Michael Haddemann, 45, died at the scene of the 6:30 a.m. crash, State Patrol Trooper Christian Siena said. Neither the driver of the FedEx truck, James Morton, 51, nor a co-worker who was in the passenger seat, Miguel Salazar Guzman, 45, were injured, Siena said. The state patrol’s Specialized Crash Reconstruction Team is still investigating the crash; no one has been cited, Siena said.

The FedEx truck busted through a guardrail while crossing over the median and into the northbound lanes of I-95, Siena said. Haddemann was driving northbound in a Chevrolet Equinox SUV when the vehicle struck the rear trailer of the oncoming FedEx truck, Siena said.

Both trailers then rolled over the SUV, Siena said.

“The trailers broke apart around the Equinox and ran the victim’s vehicle over,” Siena said.

Northbound traffic was closed completely for more than four hours. Northbound traffic did not reopen completely until 1:30 p.m., by which point the northbound Exit 38 ramp remained closed.

It marked the second fatal crash in four days on I-95 in Glynn County.

Kenneth J. Pike, 54, died Friday when the utility pickup truck his wife was driving overturned in the northbound lane near Exit 36, ejecting him from the vehicle. Michelle Pike was transported to Southeast Georgia Health System’s Brunswick campus hospital, where she has since been treated and released.

The couple was returning home to Hamden, N.Y., from a lengthy annual stay in Florida in their Ford F-150, traveling in the inside left lane, State Patrol Trooper Chris Young said. Michelle Pike told troopers that a line of tractor-trailers in the middle lane caused a “vortex” that affected the stability of the truck, which was heavily-laden with their belongings, Young said.

She drove onto the emergency lane, veered slightly into the median grass, then came back onto the road and struck a tractor-trailer in the middle lane, Young said. The pickup over turned and came to a rest on the right shoulder of the road. Kenneth Pike was ejected from the truck at some point during this, Young said.

He was not wearing a seatbelt.

The death of Haddemann on Monday brought the number of fatalities from vehicle crashes in Glynn County so far in 2017 to 10, Siena said. In all of 2016 there were nine vehicle crash fatalities, he said.

“We’re on our way to doubling that this year,” Siena said.

As in Friday’s crash, the victims in several fatal crashes this year were not wearing seat belts. Siena urges motorists to wear their seat belts.

“The majority of the fatalities this year most likely would not have been fatalities if they had been wearing their seat belts,” Siena said. “That seems to be a common thread in a lot of these. You stand a much better chance of survival if you are not thrown from the vehicle.”

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