YOUNG HARRIS, Ga. – A two-vehicle accident occurred shortly after 1 pm. Monday, March 9, on U.S. Route 76 in the vicinity of Brasstown Valley Resort near Equani Spa. According to Towns County Fire Chief Harold Copeland, two victims from the head-on collision were airlifted to Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville; one victim from the scene of the crash and the second victim from the Towns County Fire Station 2 landing zone in Young Harris.
Each vehicle involved in the collision contained a single occupant. Both victims were listed in serious condition.
As of 4 pm, traffic on Highway 76 was closed to motorists as Georgia State Patrol investigated the accident and a reenactment scene was staged.
UPDATE: According to Towns County 911, Highway 76 reopened to traffic at 4:15 pm.
The March 9 crash marks the fourth accident to occur in Towns County since Feb. 28.
YOUNG HARRIS, Ga. – A wintry mix of precipitation, along with a high rate of speed, may have been contributing factors in a Friday accident on State Route 76, in the area of Young Harris mountain.
A 20-year-old male driver was ejected from the vehicle that he was driving following a rollover crash, ending alongside the highway’s eastbound shoulder. The Hiawassee resident miraculously sustained only minor injuries, refusing ambulance transport for further medical evaluation.
Fortunately, other vehicles were not involved in the early-afternoon accident, braking in time to avoid a collision.
Emergency officials reported “slick” patches of roadway in the vicinity of the crash.
An eyewitness told FYN that the driver appeared to be traveling at a high speed when the accident occurred. “He is lucky to be alive,” the shaken Blairsville resident, who was traveling behind the victim, stated, adding that the incident was “incredibly scary.”
Due to worsening weather conditions, Towns County Commissioners Cliff Bradshaw closed the county courthouse shortly after noon on Feb. 28, as a safety precaution.
Georgia Department of Transportation road crews were witnessed conditioning the highway in question following the crash.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 17% of car accidents occur during winter weather conditions.
“Slick surfaces exaggerate any movement,” NHTSA said.”If you brake too hard or turn too hard or drive too fast, you can go into a skid…Winter driving demands special care; safe driving is a year-round habit. You and everyone in your vehicle should be wearing seat belts for every ride. Children should be in age- and size-appropriate child seats. Never drive after drinking. Never drive when distracted by an electronic device or anything else. Those are the essentials for safe driving, whatever the weather.”