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2 Md. officers injured in Beltway pileup

Accident was touched off when officer tried to stop a speeding motorcycle

The Associated Press

FORESTVILLE, Md. — A seven-car, chain-reaction crash Wednesday on the Capital Beltway killed at least two people and injured 15, including two police officers, authorities said.

It started at about 7 p.m. when a Prince George's County police officer spotted a speeding motorcycle and positioned himself to stop it on the inner loop, police said. The motorcycle rider swerved in front of a civilian car and sped away, causing the officer's car to hit the civilian's. That car rolled down an embankment onto the outer loop, where five other cars crashed into each other.

Two of the injured were police officers. One was flown to a hospital with life-threatening injuries. The other was also hospitalized, but his injuries were not considered life-threatening.

Police were looking for the motorcycle and rider believed to be responsible.

The accident and rescue effort caused the highway to be closed in both directions, backing up traffic for miles.

State highway officials also planned to close parts of the highway starting at 10 a.m. today as part of their investigation into the cause.

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