CLAXTON—A 39-year-old Andersonville man died on Wednesday morning when the westbound pickup truck he was driving collided head-on with an eastbound tractor-trailer rig on Edgemoor Road in Claxton.
Michael T. Utley was headed west in a 2001 Dodge Dakota pickup at about 6:11 a.m. Wednesday when he crossed the center line into the eastbound lane and hit a 2000 Freightliner semi pulling a trailer loaded with heavy steel coils, according to preliminary information from the Tennessee Highway Patrol.
The driver of the semi, Edmund E. Wood, 57, of Madisonville, was not injured, the THP said.
Authorities said there was a heavy fog on Wednesday morning, and it appeared that Utley went off the westbound shoulder, overcorrected, and went back into the eastbound traffic lane before hitting the tractor-trailer.
Both drivers were wearing seat belts. No citations were issued, and no criminal charges will be filed, the THP said in its report. The collision was investigated by Trooper Mike Wilson.
Besides the THP, the Anderson County Sheriff’s Department, Anderson County Emergency Medical Services, Anderson County Rescue Squad, and Claxton Fire Department responded. Clinton Highway Wrecker Service also helped, and so did the Tennessee Department of Transportation. TDOT workers repaired the road after the semi truck was removed.
Workers used a tow truck to pick up a 30,000-pound steel coil and a 3,000-pound steel coil that rolled off the semi during the collision.
THP had its critical incident response team at the scene as well as a post-crash commercial vehicle specialist.
At 3:30 p.m., the Sheriff’s Department reported that the road, which had been closed for about nine hours after the crash, had been re-opened.
More information will be added as it becomes available.