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Date: 2013
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Sept. 5, 2013

 

Contact:  1st Sgt. Kevin Ayd, 410-537-7724

 

 

MDTA POLICE OFFICERS INJURED DURING

EARLY MORNING TRAFFIC STOP ON I-95

Officers have been released from the hospital

          

 

BALTIMORE, MD - At approximately 4 a.m., two MD Transportation Authority (MDTA) Police Officers were conducting a traffic stop on the shoulder of southbound I-95 near Caton Avenue when their patrol vehicle was struck from behind by a Mercury Sable passenger vehicle. 

Thirty-one-year-old Officer Terry Breechen was outside of the vehicle at the time of the collision and was taken to Shock Trauma with minor injuries.  He has since been released.  Twenty-six-year-old Officer Scott Fleming was in the driver's seat and was taken to University Hospital with minor injuries and has since been released. 

The driver of the Mercury Sable, a 33-year-old female, was taken to Shock Trauma with minor injuries and released. 

"The men and women of the MDTA Police are extremely grateful that Officers Breechen and Fleming are going home to their families today," said MDTA Police Chief Colonel Michael T. Kundrat.  "This morning's crash underscores the immense responsibility that each and every one of us has when behind the wheel.  Move Over when passing an emergency situation.  If you're unable to move over, Slow DownIt's the law."

Baltimore resident Officer Terry Breechen is a four-year member of the MDTA Police.  Beltsville resident Officer Scott Fleming is a two-year member of the  MDTA Police.

The investigation continues into the cause of the crash.  Any witnesses should contact the MDTA Police at (410) 537-1200.  

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The Maryland Transportation Authority Police, a nationally accredited force, is the seventh-largest law-enforcement agency in the State, with more than 600 sworn and civilian law-enforcement professionals. MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the Authoritys highways, bridges and tunnels; at the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport; and at the Port of Baltimore.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Aug. 29, 2013 

Contact:  1st Sgt. Kevin Ayd, 410-537-7724

      

MDTA POLICE RELEASE INVESTIGATION REPORT
FOR JULY 19 CRASH AT BAY BRIDGE

Distracted Driving Found To Be Cause of Crash

BALTIMORE, MD – Today, the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) Police released the collision reconstruction report detailing the July 19, 2013, crash at the Bay Bridge (US 50/301). The investigation concluded that the primary cause of the crash was distracted driving on the part of the commercial-vehicle driver.

“Without a doubt, the MDTA’s priority is the safety of its customers and employees. This crash demonstrates how critical it is that motorists devote their full attention to driving when operating motor vehicles,” said MDTA Police Chief Colonel Michael Kundrat. “A primary reason for crashes on the Bay Bridge is from tailgating.  Maintaining a proper following distance is one of the simplest things drivers can do to stay safe and keep other motorists safe.”

On July 19 at 8:24 p.m., a three-vehicle crash occurred on the eastbound Bay Bridge.  The crash involved an International truck/tractor pulling a semi-trailer, a Chrysler Sebring passenger car and a Mazda CX-5 SUV. 

The tractor-trailer operator, 29-year-old Gabor Lovasz of Canada, indicated to investigators that his attention was directed to his driver’s side mirror due to flashing headlights behind him.  When he looked forward again he noticed that the vehicles in front of him were stopping.  He attempted to steer the tractor trailer to the left to avoid contact, but struck the left rear of the Chrysler, pushing it up onto the top of the barrier wall.  A second impact from the tractor trailer then pushed the Chrysler over the wall, and the car fell approximately 27 feet into the shallow waters of the bay.  The Mazda also was struck by the tractor trailer during the crash.

The investigation revealed that the Chrysler had slowed to approximately four mph when it was struck by the tractor trailer.  Based on a data download of the tractor’s Engine Control Module and Antilock Braking System, investigators believe that it was traveling between 47 and 51 mph just prior to the crash. Vehicle inspections by the Maryland State Police Automotive Safety Enforcement Division and MDTA Police Commercial Vehicle Safety Unit indicated no mechanical defects were present at the time of the inspections following the crash.

Mr. Lovasz had emigrated from Hungary to Canada as part of Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker program, and his trip through Maryland was his first time driving unaccompanied in the U.S.  The MDTA Police are charging him with failure to control speed to avoid a collision ($130 fine), unsafe lane changing ($130 fine), negligent driving ($280 fine) and speed greater than reasonable and prudent on highway ($130 fine).

The operator of the Chrysler, 23-year-old Morgan Jade Lake of Sunderland, Md., was able to unbuckle her seat belt, free herself from the vehicle and swim to safety at a nearby bridge pier abutment.  She was transported via Medevac to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, where she was treated for minor injuries. Neither    Mr. Lovasz nor the driver and passenger in the Mazda were injured.

The July 19 crash report also references a crash from April 13, 2013, in the same location on the eastbound span involving two passenger vehicles.  The April crash involved a vehicle coming to rest on the barrier wall. There were no injuries or structural damage to the bridge from the April crash.

“Both the April and July crashes were a direct result of distracted driving.  Every one of us has immense responsibility behind the wheel,” said Col. Kundrat. “With two similar incidents over the last few months, we are taking a closer look at this area of the bridge to evaluate what can be done to enhance safety. We’re analyzing potential strategies including flashing Congestion Ahead signs, requiring headlight use during two-way traffic operations and additional rumble strips.”

In the 60-year history of the Bay Bridge, the April and July crashes are the only known incidents where passenger vehicles rode up and rested on the barrier wall or went into the water.  Overall, the safety record on the Bay Bridge is four times safer than the Statewide rate.

The NTSB issued its Preliminary Report on Aug. 19, 2013.  The NTSB has the MDTA’s full cooperation as it works to issue a final report.  A timeframe for the completion of the final report has not yet been determined.

The MDTA Police’s collision reconstruction report is available online at mdta.maryland.gov.  The MDTA Police will have increased patrols over the Labor Day Holiday weekend at the Bay Bridge and all MDTA facilities with a focus on aggressive and distracted driving. 

Additional Information:

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The Maryland Transportation Authority Police, a nationally accredited force, is the seventh-largest law-enforcement agency in the State, with more than 600 sworn and civilian law-enforcement professionals. MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the Authority’s highways, bridges and tunnels; at the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport; and at the Port of Baltimore.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 16, 2013

Contact: 1st Sgt. Jonathan Green, 410-537-7724

 

REGISTRATION UNDERWAY FOR

FIFTH ANNUAL

FORT MCHENRY TUNNEL 5K RUN/WALK

2012 Event Raised $50,000

BALTIMORE, MD The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) will host the fifth annual Fort McHenry Tunnel 5K Run/Walk on Sunday, Sept. 15, to benefit Special Olympics Maryland (SOMD). The event will begin at 9 a.m. and will take participants on an out-and-back course through the right northbound tunnel tube.

"As we prepare for this years Fort McHenry Tunnel 5K Run/Walk, we are excited about this opportunity to once again raise money for the many vital programs provided by Special Olympics Maryland," said event coordinator MDTA Police Captain Joseph Alton, Jr.

To register or to support a registered runner/walker, visit tunnelrun.org. Awards will be presented in various categories, including the top three overall teams. All event participants are invited to a post-race celebration sponsored by SOMD. The entry fee is $30 during pre-registration and $35 on race day.

All northbound Interstate 95 traffic will be directed through the tunnels left northbound tube until the conclusion of the event at approximately 12 noon. Minimal traffic impact is expected.

As long-time supporters of SOMD, the MDTA Police participate in the Law Enforcement Torch Run and previously hosted the MDTA Police Plane Pull at BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport.

Media planning to cover the event should contact MDTA Police Public Information Officer 1st Sgt. Jonathan Green at 410-537-7724.

The Maryland Transportation Authority Police, a nationally accredited force, is the seventh-largest law-enforcement agency in the State, with more than 600 sworn and civilian law-enforcement professionals. MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the Authoritys highways, bridges and tunnels; at the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport; and at the Port of Baltimore.

NOTE: If you choose to use an acronym, please refer to Maryland Transportation Authority as MDTA. Thank you.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 31, 2013

 
Contact:  1st Sgt. Jonathan Green, 410-537-7724

        

MDTA POLICE ACTIVELY

SEARCHING FOR AGGRESSIVE DRIVERS

 

BALTIMORE, MD From Aug. 4 through Aug. 17, the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) Police will continue to enhance highway safety and target aggressive drivers during the third wave of the multi-state Smooth Operator Program. 

The MDTA Police strive to reduce the amount of aggressive and distracted drivers on the highways, and this is a great way to promote the education and enforcement of these daily issues, said MDTA Police Chief Col. Michael Kundrat. The easiest way to reduce aggressive driving is to allow more travel time to get to your destination.

The Smooth Operator Program is a joint effort between law-enforcement agencies to reduce the number of crashes caused by aggressive driving.  The campaign influences motorists to make decisions that help ensure a safe driving environment for everyone on the road.  

Smooth Operator began in 1997 and focuses on the four Es: Enforcement, Education, Evaluation and Engineering.  Law-enforcement agencies throughout the region have increased patrols and public awareness, researched previous campaigns and helped develop long-term roadway solutions.  For more information, please visit www.smoothoperatorprogram.com.

The MDTA Police also support the Choose Safety for Life campaign -- a partnership to save lives and prevent injuries on Marylands roadways.  This campaign encourages drivers to make safe decisions when driving on Maryland highways.

 

The Maryland Transportation Authority Police, a nationally accredited force, is the seventh-largest law-enforcement agency in the State, with more than 600 sworn and civilian law-enforcement professionals. MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the Authoritys highways, bridges and tunnels; at the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport; and at the Port of Baltimore.

 

NOTE: If you choose to use an acronym, please refer to Maryland Transportation Authority as MDTA Police.  Thank you.

 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 26, 2013

 

Contact:  1st Sgt. Jonathan Green, 410-537-7724

          

MDTA POLICE IDENTIFY VICTIM IN FATAL HIT AND RUN CRASH

Alcohol may have been a factor in crash

BALTIMORE, MD Yesterday at about 11:20 a.m. a truck driver was struck and killed in a hit-and-run collision on I-95 northbound in the area on mile marker 54.1 in the Locust Point area of Baltimore.

Yesterdays fatal hit-and-run crash once again brings to light the importance of motorists taking personal responsibility for their actions while driving motor vehicles. said MDTA Police Chief Colonel Michael Kundrat. We cant stress enough the importance of motorists being careful as they travel Marylands highways.

Jeffrey R. Anderson, 57, of Chicopee, Massachusetts was struck and killed during the crash by a northbound vehicle on I-95.

After striking Mr. Anderson, the vehicle continued to strike Mr. Andersons tractor/trailer and a tire service vehicle that had just finished repairing a flat tire on the tractor trailer. The tractor/trailer was on the right shoulder of I-95 when the collision occurred.

A suspect vehicle was stopped several miles from the crash scene with significant front end damage consistent with a pedestrian collision. The vehicle was a 2004 Pontiac with Maryland Registration operated by Peggy Kathleen Turner, 45, of Baltimore, MD.

The MDTA Police Collision Reconstruction Unit is conducting the investigation into the collision. Members of the unit have spoken to multiple witnesses to the collision. Investigators believe alcohol was a factor in the crash. The investigation is on-going and charges are pending against Ms. Turner.

The Maryland Transportation Authority Police, a nationally accredited force, is the seventh-largest law-enforcement agency in the State, with more than 600 sworn and civilian law-enforcement professionals. MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the Authoritys highways, bridges and tunnels; at the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport; and at the Port of Baltimore.

NOTE: If you choose to use an acronym, please refer to Maryland Transportation Authority as MDTA Police.  Thank you.

 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 6, 2013

Contact: 1st Sgt. Jonathan Green, 410-537-7724

MDTA POLICE PARTICIPATE IN ANNUAL

"CLICK IT OR TICKET" ENFORCEMENT CAMPAIGN

Campaign duration May 10-27, 2013

BALTIMORE, MD -- The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) Police will join law-enforcement agencies, the State Highway Administration Office of Traffic and Safety and highway-safety advocates in renewing a pledge to save lives during the annual "Click It or Ticket" campaign.

"The men and women of the MDTA Police are joining law-enforcement agencies from across Maryland to save lives during this campaign" said MDTA Police Chief Colonel Michael Kundrat. "Remember, wearing a seat belt is the single-most effective way to reduce fatalities in motor-vehicle crashes."

According to recent figures released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2011, of the 21,253 passenger vehicle occupants who were killed in motor vehicle crashes nationwide, 52 percent were NOT wearing seat belts at the time of their fatal crashes.

NHTSA also reports that, in fatal crashes during 2011, 77 percent of passenger- vehicle occupants who were thrown from their vehicles were killed. However, only 1 percent of crash victims who were buckled-up were completely ejected from their vehicles, compared to 31 percent of those who were not belted.

The MDTA Police also support the "Choose Safety for Life" campaign -- a partnership to save lives and prevent injuries on Marylands roadways. For more information, visit www.choosesafetyforlife.com.

For more information on seatbelt safety, please visit nhtsa.gov.

The Maryland Transportation Authority Police, a nationally accredited force, is the seventh-largest law-enforcement agency in the State, with more than 600 sworn and civilian law-enforcement professionals. MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the MDTAs highways, bridges and tunnels, BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport and the Port of Baltimore.

MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the MDTAs highways, bridges and tunnels, BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport and the Port of Baltimore.

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Note: If you choose to use an acronym, please refer to Maryland Transportation Authority Police as the "MDTA" Police. Thank you.

For Immediate Release:

May 3, 2013

Contact: 1st Sgt. Jonathan Green, 410-537-7724

 

MDTA POLICE HONOR FALLEN OFFICERS

BALTIMORE, MD The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) Police held the Annual Fallen Heroes Ceremony today to honor their seven officers who have given their lives in the line of duty.

Off. George Neil Ramsburg, Off. Robert Franklin Pyles Sr., Off. Thomas (Jackie) Roland Crouch, Off. Duke G. Aaron III, Off. Grant Francis Turner, Cpl. Robert Thomas Krauss and Cpl. Courtney Gerald Brooks were honored during the event held at the MDTA Police Headquarters & Memorial Garden in Baltimore.

"Today, we join together to remember the lives, service and sacrifice of our seven Fallen Heroes," said MDTA Police Chief Colonel Michael Kundrat. "Through this ceremony, we hope to comfort the surviving family members, as we ensure their loved ones will never be forgotten."

Some of these survivors joined Colonel Kundrat and the MDTA Police Honor Guard at todays ceremony. Current and retired MDTA Police Officers also attended to honor their fellow officers prior to the start of National Police Week.

The Maryland Transportation Authority Police, a nationally accredited force, is the seventh-largest law-enforcement agency in the State, with more than 600 sworn and civilian law-enforcement professionals. MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the MDTAs highways, bridges and tunnels, BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport and the Port of Baltimore.

MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the MDTAs highways, bridges and tunnels, BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport and the Port of Baltimore.

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Note: If you choose to use an acronym, please refer to Maryland Transportation Authority Police as the "MDTA" Police. Thank you.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 2, 2013

Contact: 1st Sgt. Jonathan Green, 410-537-7724

MEDIA ADVISORY
                                               
MDTA POLICE TO HONOR FALLEN OFFICERS

WHAT: Tomorrow, the MD Transportation Authority (MDTA) Police will honor their Fallen Officers and their surviving family members at the MDTA Police Memorial Garden.

WHEN: Friday, May 3, 2013
              
9 to 11 a.m.

WHERE: MDTA Police Headquarters

             4330 Broening Highway

             Baltimore, MD 21222

Directions: From northbound and southbound I-95: Take Keith Avenue (Exit 56). At the traffic signal at the end of the ramp, turn left onto Keith Avenue. Follow Keith Avenue, which merges into Broening Highway. Proceed past Seagirt Marine Terminal and Turners Station. As Broening Highway begins to merge with I-695, make a left at the sign for MDTA Police Headquarters. Proceed into the parking lot.

From I-695 east: (over the Francis Scott Key Bridge): Take the first exit past the toll plaza (Exit 44). At the bottom of the ramp, turn right into the parking lot.

From I-695 west: Make an immediate right after the Key Bridge toll plaza into the parking lot. Continue through the power gate and turn right onto Authority Drive. At the end of Authority Drive, make a right at Broening Highway. As Broening Highway begins to merge with I-695, make a left at the sign for MDTA Police Headquarters. Proceed into the parking lot.

Members of the media who plan to cover the event should contact 1st Sgt. Jonathan Green, MDTA Police Public Information Officer, at 410-537-7724.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 21, 2013

Contact: Sgt. Jonathan Green, 410-537-7724

MEDIA ADVISORY

MDTA POLICE TO HOST RECRUITMENT EVENT FOR POLICE CADETS

"Join the Ranks"

WHAT: The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) Police will host its fourth Police Cadet
             Career Night. This event is designed provide high school seniors and graduates
            (ages 17-20) with information about becoming an to MDTA Police Cadet.
 
WHO:    Lt. Colonel Eric Garrison, MDTA Police Deputy Chief
              Maj. Joseph Ruff, Commander Support Services Division

WHEN: 5:00 to 7:15 p.m.
             Friday, March 22, 2013

WHERE: MDTA Police Headquarters, Multipurpose Room
               4330 Broening Highway
               Baltimore, MD 21222

Directions:  From northbound and southbound I-95: Take Keith Avenue (Exit 56).  At the traffic signal at the end of the ramp, turn left onto Keith Avenue.  Follow Keith Avenue, which merges into Broening Highway.  Proceed past Seagirt Marine Terminal and Turners Station.  As Broening Highway begins to merge with I-695, make a left at sign for MDTA Police Headquarters.  Proceed into the parking lot.

From I-695 east (over the Francis Scott Key Bridge): Take the first exit past the toll plaza (Exit 44).  At the bottom of the ramp, turn right into the parking lot. 

From I-695 west: Make an immediate right after the Key Bridge toll plaza into the parking lot.  Continue through the power gate and turn right onto Authority Drive.  At the end of Authority Drive, make a right at Broening Highway.  As Broening Highway begins to merge with I-695, make a left at the sign for MDTA Police Headquarters.  Proceed into the parking lot.

             

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For Immediate Release:

March 8, 2013

Contact:  Sgt. Jonathan Green, 410-537-7724

          

                      MDTA POLICE HONOR TOP COPS

Harford County Resident Named Officer of the Year

BALTIMORE, MD -- The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) Police held its Annual Awards Ceremony yesterday to honor sworn and civilian members who distinguished themselves during 2012.

Off. Gregory Sampson was named the MDTA Police Officer of the Year for 2012.  A Harford County resident and seven-year member of the force, Off. Sampson received the award for his exceptional work and service while assigned to the Thomas J. Hatem Memorial Bridge (US 40) detachment.

Last year, the men and women of the MDTA Police continued to excel as a police force in carrying out its mission, said MDTA Police Chief, Colonel Michael Kundrat. I am proud of each of the recipients who were honored and recognized for their efforts during last nights ceremony.

More than 60 officers and civilians also were honored with Awards of Excellence, Lifesaving Awards, Chiefs Commendations, Distinguished Service Awards and the Metal of Valor, among others.  Award recipients were nominated by citizens or by fellow employees.

The Maryland Transportation Authority Police, a nationally accredited force, is the seventh-largest law-enforcement agency in the State, with more than 600 sworn and civilian law-enforcement professionals.  MDTA Police officers provide law enforcement at the MDTAs highways, bridges and tunnels, BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport and the Port of Baltimore.

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Note:  If you choose to use an acronym, please refer to Maryland Transportation Authority Police as the MDTA Police.  Thank you.