Central Maine Power Co. works to repair downed utility poles and lines on Lewiston Road (Route 196) in Topsham Friday evening, work that kept the road shut down until 10 p.m. (Topsham Police Department photo)

TOPSHAM — A crash closed Route 196 in Topsham for six hours Friday afternoon, backing up traffic for miles.

According to the police department’s Facebook page, Lewiston Road (Route 196) was closed to through traffic in the area of Harpswell Auto. Traffic was diverted down Meadow Cross Road to Route 125.

Topsham Police Sgt. Mark Gilliam said the crash was reported at 3:43 p.m. He said James Parakilas, 70, of Lewiston was driving a Nissan Altima east on Route 196 when the vehicle left the right side of the road, struck a pole, hit two trees and then a rock.

The impact broke the utility pole, downing wires, which broke a second utility pole, Gilliam said.

Parakilas was transported to Central Maine Medical Center with injuries that police didn’t believe were life threatening. Gilliam said the driver may have suffered a medical event, which could have contributed to the crash.

A Nissan Altima hit a utility pole and trees on Route 196 in Topsham Friday afternoon. (Topsham Police Department Photo)

Crews from Central Maine Power Co. responded to the scene to repair the damage, which took several hours. The road was closed from approximately 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Gilliam said one of the challenges was getting vehicles already beyond the detour point to turn around. Topsham firefighters, Topsham Public Works employees and Lisbon police officers helped with traffic.

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