February 27, 2013

UMaine women's basketball bus crash leaves team feeling 'blessed'

Players, coaches treated for minor injuries; driver in a Boston hospital after losing consciousness

By Gillian Graham ggraham@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 2)

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Massachusetts State Police examine the front of a bus that crashed in Georgetown, Mass., on Tuesday while carrying University of Maine women's basketball players to a game.

The Associated Press

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Police work at the scene in Georgetown, Mass., on Tuesday where a bus carrying University of Maine women's basketball players crashed on Interstate 95 north of Boston.

The Associated Press

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Location map: Georgetown, MA

The crash is being investigated by Troop A of the Massachusetts State Police with help from the State Police Collision Reconstruction and Analysis Section, the Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Section, and the Crime Scene Services Section.

The crime scene unit routinely goes to major crashes to photograph and collect physical evidence, and its presence does not suggest anything criminal, a police spokesman said.

Police will determine whether the bus has an electronic module, much like an airplane's "black box," which would show data such as speed, braking and other vehicle information in the seconds before the crash. Maj. Arthur Sugrue, of the Massachusetts State Police, said there was nothing to suggest Hamlin was under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

State police investigators were able to interview Hamlin at Boston Medical Center. His injuries included several broken bones, police said.

Police are unlikely to charge Hamlin in connection with the crash but will make sure that his medical records are up to date, a police spokesman said.

UMaine Athletic Director Steve Abbott said Tuesday the crash occurred after Hamlin apparently passed out and lost control.

Abbott said a UMaine staff member who was on the bus told him that Barron tried to grab the wheel as the bus crossed the median and then the northbound traffic lanes before stopping upright in a wooded area off the highway.

"He crossed three lanes of traffic and miraculously did not hit another car," Abbott said.

Barron, the head coach, said he is unsure of the status of the team's final game Saturday night until he knows whether he has enough players. The team has 4-23 record for the season.

"We had some terrible luck throughout the season, but we saved it all up for last night," Barron said. "We're very grateful that everybody is alive (and) we're very grateful that we didn't sustain more serious injuries. We feel very, very blessed ... that's probably the biggest takeaway."

UMaine's game against Boston University, which was supposed to take place Wednesday night, was cancelled. The team's last regular-season game, scheduled for Saturday afternoon in Orono against the University of New Hampshire, is up in the air.

The team is scheduled to open the America East conference tournament next Thursday in Albany, N.Y., but school officials said the status of that game also was uncertain Wednesday.

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Additional Photos

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Police work at the scene of the bus crash in Georgetown, Mass., on Tuesday that injured the bus driver and seven players and two coaches from the University of Maine women's basketball team.

The Associated Press


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