By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
Three Monroe County residents, including one who had to be airlifted to an area trauma center, were hospitalized after a May 17 chain reaction that involved a tractor-trailer rig, an SUV, a van and a truck.
The collision occurred around 4:45 p.m., at Alabama 21’s 10.75-mile marker, about 150-200 yards south of Holman Correctional Facility. Traffic in both directions continued to back up for about half an hour before homebound and other drivers were slowly waved past the wreckage.
According to reports filed by Alabama State Troopers, the multi-car mishap occurred when a 2012 Ford pickup, owned by Alabama Department of Corrections and driven by 49-year-old Robert Davis of Atmore, stopped in the southbound lane to make a left turn.
A 2017 Chevrolet commercial van driven by Wesley Barr, 53, of Timmonsville, S.C. stopped behind the pickup, and a 2003 Chevrolet SUV driven by Charlene Lett, 43, of Peterman “was stopped or was stopping” behind the van.
William Walker, 62, of Atmore, who was driving a 1996 Peterbilt rig, “did not realize everyone was stopped or stopping until it was too late,” troopers reported.
The tractor-trailer rig slammed into the rear of Lett’s vehicle, knocking it into the van and knocking the van into the pickup. The SUV’s front and rear body sustained deep dents; its back glass was shattered, and its windshield was cracked.
Charlene Lett and a passenger, Christopher Rudolph, 27, also of Peterman ,suffered injuries that were labeled “non-life threatening” and were taken in separate ambulances to Atmore Community Hospital.
Another passenger, 33-year-old Alekis Lett of Monroeville, was more seriously injured. He was taken in a third ambulance to a landing zone behind Atmore’s Taco Bell, from which he was flown by Lifeflight helicopter to USA Medical Center in Mobile.