McDowell collision claims 1
RAYSAL, Apr 19, 2012 (Bluefield Daily Telegraph - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
A member of a local rescue squad died Wednesday after a coal truck crossed the center line of a local roadway and struck the ambulance she was driving.
McDowell County 911 was alerted about the crash on Route 83 in Raysal at approximately 12:37 p.m., said Chief Deputy Mark Shelton of the McDowell County Sheriff's Department.
"It was a McDowell County Ambulance Authority ambulance and a coal truck," Shelton replied when asked to describe the vehicles involved.
The coal truck was not loaded, and the ambulance was not transporting a patient when the crash happened, Shelton said.
"The coal truck lost control, crossed the center line, and struck the ambulance," he said. "It was a sideswipe impact. It knocked the ambulance against the guardrail, and then the coal truck came to rest on the guardrail just past the ambulance."
The ambulance's female driver and another member of the ambulance authority had to be extricated from the wreckage, Shelton said. They were transported to Welch Community Hospital where the driver was later pronounced dead.
Shelton did not know the current condition of the ambulance's passenger. The truck's driver, whose name was not released, was not transported by ambulance, he said.
Shelton said the ambulance driver's name was not being released Wednesday pending notification of her next of kin.
Cpl. Lyle Noe is the crash's lead investigator. The cause of the crash is still under investigation. Rain was falling when the crash occurred, but it was not known whether it was a factor in the accident.
"But the way it's looking, the coal truck lost control and struck the ambulance," Shelton said.
--Contact Greg Jordan at
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