BY KEN LITTLE
A Greene County man died about 9 a.m. Friday when he swerved his compact car to avoid a vehicle turning in front of him, entered the adjacent, oncoming lane of traffic and collided head-on with a large dump truck coming from the opposite direction.
The accident occurred at Hermon Circle on the 107 Cutoff (Tenn. Rt. 351), between Middle Creek Road and the Erwin Highway (Tenn. Rt. 107).
The posted speed limit at the scene of the accident was 35 mph, according to the official report.
Ray McIntosh, 74, of Tabor Road, was driving an older-model Volkswagen Golf northbound on the 107 Cutoff toward the Erwin Highway when the vehicle collided head-on on the driver's side with a five-axle dump truck going toward Camp Creek.
The driver of the truck was Vance L. Pierce, 55, of Gap Creek Road, Bulls Gap.
McIntosh was killed in the crash, said Lt. David Burns, of the Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP). Pierce was not injured.
The wreck remains under investigation. No charges have been placed.
According to the official Tennessee Highway Patrol report by Trooper Matthew Blankenship, the dump truck was traveling south on the 107 Cutoff, toward Camp Creek, and the Volkswagen was traveling north on that highway.
A third vehicle, described in the report as "a non-contact vehicle," made a left turn onto Hermon Circle in the north-bound lane.
The Volkswagen swerved into the dump truck's lane to avoid the turning vehicle, and the Volkswagen and the dump truck collided head-on.
The vehicle that had been turning left did not remain at the scene. Investigators were seeking to interview its occupants Friday, Lt. Burns said.
The 107 Cutoff between Middle Creek Road and Erwin Highway remained shut down until late Friday afternoon while a THP Critical Incident Response Team from Knoxville performed a crash reconstruction.
The four-door compact car came to rest suspended over a guard rail, with its front end on the road.
The truck is owned by Hooker's Excavation and Trucking, of Bulls Gap.
Because the truck is commercially licensed, a post-crash inspection was conducted on the vehicle by a trooper who works in commercial vehicle enforcement, Lt. Burns said.
More than 100 feet of skid marks on the 107 Cutoff were clearly visible along the road up to the point where the truck came to a stop.
The dump truck was empty at the time of the crash and may have been on its way to pick up a load of sand, Burns said.
Toxicology tests will be conducted on the truck driver and the crash victim, but it is expected to take weeks for results to be available.
The car driven by McIntosh leaked fuel on the road. The gas was cleaned up by the Greeneville/Greene County Haz-Mat Team and members of the Tusculum Volunteer Fire Department.
Also on scene were the Greeneville Emergency & Rescue Squad and Greene County-Greeneville Emergency Medical Services.