Driver apparently fell asleep behind the wheel
WALDORF, Md. (October 22, 2010)Maryland State Police are continuing to investigate the single-vehicle crash that took the lives of two highway workers in Charles County early Thursday afternoon.
The victims are identified as Marlon E. C. Lorenzo, 28, of the 2300-block of Glenmont Circle, Silver Spring, Md., and Erick T. M. Alvarado, 24, of 2000-block of Evans Parkway, Silver Spring. Both victims were pronounced dead at the scene.
The driver is identified as Yuri M. F. Vielot Jr., 24, of the 7000-block of Highview Terrace, Hyattsville, Md. He was driving a 2004 Volkswagen Touareg.
Shortly after 1:30 p.m. today, Maryland State Police from the La Plata Barrack responded to westbound Rt. 228, just east of Bensville Road, for the report of a traffic crash. When they arrived, troopers found a crash scene that covered both directions of travel on Rt. 228, so the entire highway had to be closed.
The Maryland State Police CRASH Team responded to the scene to conduct a detailed crash investigation and reconstruction. State Highway Administration personnel responded to set up traffic detours around the area. Deputies from the Charles County Sheriff's Office assisted with traffic at the scene.
The preliminary investigation indicates Vielot was driving westbound on Rt. 228 approaching Bensville Road, when he apparently fell asleep. A witness following him said his vehicle moved off the left side of the roadway and into the median. Vielot struck a large highway sign, then struck the two victims who were part of a three person team working in the median. The third man was not struck by the vehicle and was not injured.
The victims were part of a highway work team contracted by the State Highway Administration. They had mowed the grass in the median and along the shoulders and were picking up trash when they were struck. Both victims were wearing fluorescent green highway safety vests when they were struck.
Vielot remained at the scene after the crash. He was transported as a precaution to Ft. Washington Hospital, where he was examined and released.
No charges have been filed at this time, but are pending. Upon completion, the Maryland State Police detailed crash reconstruction and investigation will be presented to the Charles County State's Attorney's Office for review and consultation concerning charges.
Both east and westbound Rt. 228 were reopened shortly after 5:30 p.m. today. The investigation is continuing.
Source: Maryland State Police Headquarters