A Lancaster city woman was killed in a crash involving a car-carrying tractor-trailer Tuesday afternoon along stretch of Route 72 in East Hempfield Township that has seen several deadly crashes in the last several months, according to the coroner and East Hempfield Township police.
The woman was killed when the sedan she was in and the tractor-trailer collided near Lancaster (Route 72) and Lititz roads, about 2 miles north of East Petersburg, at 11:57 am, police said in a news release. The woman, who was a passenger, was pronounced dead at the scene.
A decision has not been made as to whether the 75-year-old woman, whose identity has not been released, will undergo an autopsy, Lancaster County Coroner Dr. Stephen Diamantoni said.
The sedan was traveling east along Lititz Road when it entered the Route 72 intersection and collided with the tractor-trailer, which was traveling north, police said. The tractor-trailer did not appear to be carrying any vehicles at the time of the crash.
Two others were transported to a hospital as a result of the crash, according to a supervisor with Lancaster County-Wide Communications.
Route 72 was closed for several hours in both directions between Root and Graystone roads as the Lancaster County Major Crash Investigative Unit investigated.
Any witnesses to the crash are urged to contact Sgt. Joshua Sandman at 717-898-3103.
Tuesday’s recent collision isn’t the only fatal crash at the same intersection in months. A 10-year-old girl was killed and another person injured in a crash involving a tractor-trailer near the same intersection Feb. 9.
State Rep. Mindy Fee, who along with other local officials has sought to reduce collisions in the area, issued a statement Tuesday saying she was “sickened that there has been another loss of life at this busy intersection.”
Fee said she is continuing to work with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and the county on a “full-scale” solution for reducing crashes at the intersection, but “in the meantime, the status quo is no longer sufficient.” Fee added that she has asked municipal leaders, police chiefs, county officials and PennDOT officials to meet again soon to discuss “viable short-term measures” that would urge drivers to use greater attention and caution when approaching the intersection.
“The wheels of government and transportation funding turn slowly, but we must gain approval to implement short-term changes to prevent further incidents in the interim,” she said.
The roughly 5-mile stretch of Route 72 between Manheim and East Petersburg has seen multiple other crashes resulting in deaths or serious injuries as while recently as March 8, when a 29-year-old pedestrian was struck and killed, to cross the street near Enterprise Road.
Last year a 21-year-old motorcyclist was killed after crashing with two other vehicles, one of them a public works vehicle, near Quarry Road on Oct. 25; And a brother and sister, ages 21 and 18, were killed after being struck by a car-carrying tractor-trailer near Graystone Road in East Petersburg on May 22. Three people were also hospitalized with traumatic injuries after a head-on crash near Hillside. Avenue in Penn Township on Sept. 3.
Fee, a member of the State House Transportation Committee and chair of its safety subcommittee, urged PennDOT last month to “settle on the best solution” for reducing the number of crashes along the road, adding that she would work to fund such a project.