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Maryland State Police News Release

Maryland State Police Investigating Fatal Collision

(White Hall, MD) – Maryland State Troopers are investigating a crash in which a 43-year-old man died this morning.

At approximately 5:30 a.m., troopers from the Maryland State Police Bel Air Barrack responded to a motor vehicle collision at the intersection of MD Route 23 and White Hall Road. According to a preliminary investigation, a Dodge van, being driven by Michael Ciarpella, 64, of Jarrettsville, MD, was stopped on northbound MD Rt. 23 preparing to make a left turn onto White Hall Road.

A Chevrolet Astro Van, being driven by James McDonald, 66, of Fallston, MD, struck the rear of the Dodge van forcing it into the path of a Ford van. The Ford van, driven by Joseph Wheeler, 31, of Stewartstown, PA, was traveling south on Rt. 23 and collided with the Dodge van.

The driver of the Dodge van, Ciarpella, was flown to  Shock Trauma in Baltimore by Maryland State Police helicopter. The passenger of the Dodge van, Mark Griffiths, 43, of Monkton, MD, was transported by ambulance to York Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced deceased. Wheeler and McDonald where the lone occupants of their vehicles and refused treatment. At this time, no charges have been filed as troopers continue their investigation to determine the cause.

The Maryland State Police was assisted by the Harford County Sheriff’s Office, the Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration and the Jarrettsville Volunteer Fire Company.

Rt. 23 was closed for approximately three hours.