Traffic backup from deadly accident on I-85 in Cherokee Co Thursday night.
CHEROKEE COUNTY, N.C. -
A two car collision that backed up traffic for miles on I-85 has claimed the life of one person and sent two others to the hospital.
It happened Thursday night around 9:45 on I-85 in Cherokee County near Exit 102. That's in the city limits of Blacksburg. Lance Corporal Tony Keller with the South Carolina Highway Patrol says two vehicles were involved in the accident, two people were transported to the hospital and one person was killed.
Driving a 1995 Mercury, 59-year-old Robert Wanzelak from Lakewood, FL was transported to Spartanburg Regional with non-life threatening injuries. He was wearing a seatbelt.
The other vehicle, a 2012 Dodge pickup, had two occupants inside. The first was 40-year-old Eva Vickers from Glendale, SC. She was also transported to Spartanburg Regional with non-life threatening injuries after being ejected from the truck. According to Cherokee County Coroner Dennis Fowler, the victim, 38-year-old Brannon Keith Harrison from Gaffney was ejected as well, and pronounced dead on the scene. Coroner Fowler says both occupants were not wearing seatbelts. It is unclear at this time who was driving the truck, according to the coroner.
The coroner says the truck struck the car in the rear at what he believes was a very high rate of speed near Exit 102. After impact, the pick-up truck overturned and ejected both Vickers and Harrison before coming to a stop on top of the median cable barrier.
Coroner Dennis Fowler says, "Harrison's body was found in the roadway while the other occupant was found in the median. Neither were wearing seat belts at the time of the crash."
An autopsy has been scheduled for Friday.
The South Carolina Highway Patrol is investigating the accident.
Traffic was backed up on I-85 until 3:30 a.m. Friday morning.