By Jessica Farrish
Four local residents along with tourists from Wisconsin and North Carolina were involved in a Memorial Day crash that sent several people to the hospital, Fayette County Sheriff Steve Kessler said Monday.
The crash happened on a single-lane road in the Hico area.
None of the motorists appeared to have life-threatening injuries, Kessler added.
According to the sheriff, a vehicle driven by visitors from Wisconsin and a second vehicle, driven by tourists from North Carolina, were traveling south on Sunday Road toward U.S. 60 around 9:45 a.m. Monday.
A third automobile, carrying four local residents, was traveling north at the same time. The northbound vehicle and one of the southbound vehicles crashed head-on near the crest of a small hill.
Upon seeing the crash, the driver of the second southbound vehicle steered to the right side of the roadway to try to avoid hitting the two crashed automobiles in his path, Kessler said.
His vehicle struck the ditch line, however, and went around the vehicle that was directly in front of him.
As he re-entered the roadway, he crashed into the driver’s side of one of the wrecked automobiles, sending it across the road and into the ditch on the opposite side, Kessler reported.
When emergency responders arrived, they determined that several of the motorists had moderate to severe injuries.
The driver of one of the vehicles had to be extricated using “jaws of life.”
Four people were sent to Summersville Regional Medical Center and one was sent to Plateau Medical Center in Oak Hill.
Deputy R.G. Gipson declined to press charges and determined that drugs and alcohol did not appear to be factors in the crash.
“At this time, it appears that this accident is a result of the visiting drivers being unfamiliar with this single-lane road,” said Kessler. Names of the crash victims were not released Monday.
Ansted and Nuttall Volunteer fire departments responded, along with ambulance crews from Jan-Care and General Ambulance.