UPDATE: The fatality in the July 26 crash at the Highway 17 exit on I-95 in Richmond Hill has been identified as Martha McIntire, 67, of Wilmington, N.C., according to Georgia State Patrol Trooper Shane Copeland. No charges have been filed in the wreck, which also involved truck driver Riven Venture, 35, of Hallandale Beach, Fla., truck driver Donnie Desue, 63, of Jacksonville, Fla., and SUV drivers Christina Hester, 41, of Garden City and Christina Barbot, 33, of Richmond Hill.
Here's the initial story:
One person was killed and five others injured Thursday in an accident caused when a tractor trailer driver swerved to avoid hitting slow moving traffic at the Highway 17 exit on I-95 in Richmond Hill.
trailer driver was headed south in the right lane near the busy interchange around
5:45 p.m. when he came across slow traffic getting off on Highway 17, according
to Georgia State Patrol Trooper Shane Copeland of the GSP’s Specialized
Collision Reconstruction Team.
Copeland said it appears the tractor trailer driver steered into the center lane, hitting another tractor trailer and causing it to spin out of control.
The second tractor trailer went into the right lane of traffic where cars were waiting to get off the interstate and hit an SUV, dragging it several feet until it was thrown over the side of a concrete barrier and on to railroad tracks below.
The driver of that SUV was able to get out of her vehicle, Copeland said, but the tractor trailer then hit another SUV. That SUV, with a woman behind the wheel and a man in the passenger’s seat, was pinned against a concrete barrier and caught fire, which ignited the tractor trailer, authorities said.
The man was able to get out and was taken to the Joseph M. Stills Burn Center in Augusta for treatment. The woman was unable to get out of the SUV, Copeland said.
No names have been released, but Copeland said a Jeep was also hit and charges are pending against the driver of the first tractor trailer driver.
Traffic at both the Highway 17 and Highway 144 interchanges in Richmond Hill regularly backs up onto the interstate during evening rush hour.
Jeff Whitten contributed to this report.