OLIVER SRINGS—A female driver died and a passenger escaped Tuesday night when a small car crashed into a private pond on England Road in Oliver Springs.
Oliver Springs Police Chief Kenneth Morgan said the driver and female passenger won’t be identified until relatives have been notified.
The crash occurred sometime before 8:30 p.m. Tuesday. Property owner Marcia Pemberton said she came out of her house around then and heard screaming. At first, she thought it was family members playing at the dam at the pond. But then she realized these were different screams—screams for help, Pemberton said.
“Then I took off running,” she said.
The passenger was in a corner of the 18-foot-deep pond, hanging onto a tree and unable to get out because of the steep banks. There’s a car in the water, the woman told Pemberton.
Pemberton called 911, put down her phone, and helped the woman out of the water. She said the driver apparently had seizures, came over the top of a hill on England Road, hit a utility pole laid sideways at the side of the road, and went airborne into the pond.
Three divers searched the dark, murky water for the car and driver: Anderson County Sheriff Paul White; Oak Ridge firefighter T.J. Giles, who also volunteers with the Oliver Springs and Marlow fire departments as well as the Anderson County Rescue Squad; and Adam Daugherty of the Oliver Springs Fire Department. They found the red two-door coupe upside down buried chest-high in silt a little more than an hour after the crash was reported. It took about another hour to clear some brush and pull the car and driver out of the water.
Morgan said authorities are checking into the report that the driver may have had seizures.
Two tow trucks responded to help pull the car out of the water and up the dam leading down to the pond.
Morgan said more information could be available later today (Wednesday).
Update at 4:05 p.m.: The Oliver Springs Police Department has released the names of the driver and passenger. See this story for more information.
More information will be added as it becomes available.