A Greeneville woman remained hospitalized in Johnson City late Friday night following a three-vehicle collision shortly before 5 p.m. on Tennessee Rt. 70 (the Asheville Highway), less than a mile south of the Greeneville town limits.
The woman, Murriel (Maude) Thompson, who the Tennessee Highway Patrol said was in her 80s, was a patient at Johnson City Medical Center as of late Friday night.
No definite information on her condition was available, but a family source said Thompson's injuries, while painful, are not thought to be life-threatening. She is believed to have suffered some broken ribs.
Two other persons involved in the accident, a woman and a man, were taken to local hospitals, but Tennessee Highway Patrol Trooper James Knipper indicated in an interview Friday night that he did not believe they were seriously injured.
Trooper Knipper, who is investigating the accident, said that it occurred when an older-model Ford pickup truck driven by Andrew Cook pulled onto the highway and attempted to turn left (north), toward Greeneville.
When he did that, he ran into a southbound Honda driven by James Bettis, the trooper said.
The Honda was knocked to the left into the northbound lane of the highway and collided with a northbound Mercury sedan driven by Madge Walker, of Greeneville.
The collision knocked the Mercury off the highway into an embankment, Trooper Knipper said.
Walker and her passenger, Thompson, were initially taken to Laughlin Memorial Hospital, according to Knipper.
Bettis was taken to Takoma Regional Hospital, the officer said.
Cook, the driver of the truck, was not injured, according to Knipper. He said that charges would be placed against Cook.
Information on the condition of Walker and Bettis was not available late Friday night, nor were addresses of those involved in the accident.
Trooper Knipper said that traffic flow was reduced to one lane at the accident location and remained somewhat clogged for at least an hour.
The Greene County Sheriff's Department assisted at the scene.