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Troopers Identify Hartley Man Killed In Townsend Accident


Townsend- The Delaware State Police have identified the name of the driver who died in a crash on August 17, 2019 on USRT 13 and Pine Tree Road, Townsend, as 70-year-old Salvatore Rothwell of Hartley, DE.

Original Story

Townsend– The Delaware State Police Collision Reconstruction Unit is investigating a fatal crash that occurred yesterday afternoon, according to Public Information Officer, Master Corporal Melissa Jaffe.

Jaffe said the incident occurred on August 17, 2019 at approximately 3:38 p.m., when a 2013 Hino box truck was traveling southbound on USRT 13 in the right lane of two southbound lanes of travel and approaching the intersection with Pine Tree Road. A 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee was traveling northbound on USRT 13 in the left turn lane approaching the intersection with Pine Tree Road. The traffic signal at this intersection was cycled to green for the box truck. The traffic signal for the Cherokee was flashing a red arrow, which allows for motorists to make a left turn after coming to a complete stop. The operator of the Cherokee proceeded to make the left turn directly into the path of the box truck, causing the two vehicles to collide, according to Jaffe.


The operator of the box truck a 40-year-old male from Bear, DE was properly restrained and did not sustain injuries. There were two front-seat passengers in the truck. The right-front passenger was properly restrained and transported to the Christiana Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The middle front seat passenger was not properly restrained and did not sustain injuries.

The operator of the Cherokee, a 70-year-old male from Hartley, DE was properly restrained. He was transported to the Christiana Hospital where he was pronounced deceased. His name is being withheld at this time pending the notification of next of kin.


US RT 13 southbound at Pine Tree Road was closed for approximately 3 hours while the crash was investigated and cleared.

The crash continues remains under investigation by the Troop 2 Collision Reconstruction Unit.



Delaware State Police have issued a traffic advisory involving a fatal crash in Townsend.

“Townsend- The Delaware State Police are currently on the scene of a fatal crash that has southbound Dupont Parkway (Rt. 13) in the area of Pine Tree Road closed.

Motorists will experience delays in the area and are advised to seek alternate routes of travel.”

The northbound lanes have been reopened.


Breaking Report

Townsend – Rescue crews from the Townsend Fire Company along with medics, Delaware State Police, NCCPD, and Trooper 4 have been dispatched to Route 13 at Pine Tree Road for an injury accident.

Route 13 is closed in both direction while crews work the crash.

Command has ordered the road closed. This will be an extended closure per Command.

Avoid the area.


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First State Update's Delaware editorial team covers New Castle County, Kent County and Sussex County breaking news, political news, and general news stories. We bring the reader the latest news from the Wilmington, Newark, Dover, Rehoboth Beach and all point in between. If you have news to share, email us at

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