September 8, 2013

Police ID two children, driver in I-295 crash

A fourth person in the car is identified as the children's mother.

By David Hench dhench@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

PORTLAND – Maine State Police have identified two children who were ejected from the minivan they were riding in Friday when it struck the guardrail on Interstate 295.

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Maine State Police stand by as a vehicle is towed from the crash scene on Interstate 295 southbound near Tukey's Bridge on Friday.

Photo by David Hench / Staff Writer

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Maine State Police Trooper Angela Porter photograph's the scene of Friday's crash.

The children were taken to a hospital with serious injuries, which were said to be not life-threatening. Two adults, including their mother, also were hospitalized with injuries that did not appear to be serious.

Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Department of Public Safety, said the state police file on the crash will be turned over to the Cumberland County District Attorney's office this week to decide if charges should be filed against the driver, Ali Al Fatlawi, 43, of Portland.

State police identified the children as Noorulhuda Al Fatlawi, 11, and Abdulrahman Al Fatlawi, 9.

The fourth person in the vehicle was Khiwlah Lafta, 35, who was a passenger in the front seat and is the mother of the two children. Conditions of the four were not available Saturday night.

The crash occurred in the southbound lanes in the area of Tukey's Bridge about 1 p.m. Friday. The white minivan veered off the travel lane, over the shoulder and into the guardrail, launching the children out of the car, police said.

The window of the minivan's sliding door was smashed out and the door was open after the crash. Police said it appeared the children, who are elementary school age, weren't wearing seat belts.

An accident reconstruction was conducted Friday afternoon, police said. Traffic was diverted onto the Washington Avenue exit of I-295, causing backups there.

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