Torrential rain causes wrecks
By By MARY-ALLISON LANCASTER – Managing editor
When it's raining, officers with the Brewton Police Department advise motorists to “slow down, slow down, slow down” while heading north on Hwy. 31.
Two accidents were reported before lunch yesterday. No severe injuries were reported, but both accidents occurred at the same area on Hwy. 31.
Tammie Nolan, of Brewton, was traveling north on Hwy. 31 in her green Nissan when her car hydroplaned and crossed into the path of an 18-wheeler log truck driven by Jullian Moore. Moore, who drives a logging truck for Jack Callen Logging based out of Fort Deposit, Ala., was heading south on Hwy. 31.
Officers said that Nolan was “shaken up” and was complaining of minor injuries. She was transported to D.W. McMillan Hospital where she was treated for minor injuries. According to reports on the radio, Nolan had not been wearing a seat belt.
In a separate single-car accident, James Wells, of Brewton, was traveling north on Hwy. 31 when his Chevrolet Capris hydroplaned at approximately the same spot as the first accident. According to Lt. Feast Broughton, Wells was traveling around the curve, hydroplaned, struck a tree and went into the ditch. He was checked at the scene and reported no injuries. Wells was wearing a seat belt.
Broughton said that where the two accidents occurred is “one of our highest accident areas when it's raining.” Officers say that when there is a consistent rain, water travels quickly down a hill and bottoms and crosses the hill.
Brewton Police Chief Monte McGougin said that since Friday, Jan. 13, three wrecks have been reported at the same curve on Hwy. 31. Officers were unsure as to how many accidents in the past year have occurred at the curve on Hwy. 31, but published reports show at least more than one dozen accidents have occurred at that spot.
Due to the significant amount of wrecks that have occurred at the curve over the years, McGougin said that he will be sending the reports to the Alabama Department of Transportation to request information on what appears to be the cause of so many wrecks and what ALDOT can do to possibly alleviate the problem.
The National Weather Service issued a severe thunderstorm warning yesterday with a 90 percent chance of rain. Rainfall was expected to reach around a half an inch.