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4 injured in pair of wrecks

February 22, 1998|By LISA GRAYBEAL

4 injured in pair of wrecks

Two accidents that happened within minutes of each other on and near Interstate 70 Sunday afternoon sent four people to the hospital with injuries, according to Maryland State Police.

A Falling Waters, W.Va., woman was taken to Washington County Hospital in Hagerstown with a broken ankle after falling asleep on I-70 near the Beaver Creek Road overpass, police said.

Irene Ellen Turner, age unavailable, was heading west on the Interstate at 3:47 p.m. when she fell asleep and her vehicle left the right roadside and went up the embankment toward the overpass, police said.

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The vehicle struck the bridge beam and slid down the concrete into a bridge pillar, police said.

Turner was charged with negligent driving, police said.

Seven minutes later, at 3:54 p.m., police were called to the I-70 exit at Sharpsburg Pike, where a tractor-trailer struck the rear of a vehicle as it waited to turn left into a gas station, pushing it into an oncoming car, police said.

Priscilla Watkins, 35, of Hagerstown, and her two passengers, Dustin Jackson, 12, of Hagerstown, and Alysia Harper, 7, of Cumberland, Md., were being treated for injuries in Washington County Hospital's emergency room Sunday night, according to a hospital spokeswoman.

Watkins was driving her turquoise Hyundai north on Md. 65 and prepared to turn left into the American Convenience Store when a tandem Roadway Express tractor-trailer, driven by Carl Caughorn, 57, of Morristown, Tenn., struck the vehicle from behind, police said.

The impact pushed the car across the center line into the path of a white Dodge Intrepid driven by Joseph Feather, 58, of Mount Gretna, Pa., police said.

The truck was not damaged, police said.

The two cars were towed from the scene, police said.

Caughorn was charged with failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, police said.

Family members of Watkins, who were at the accident scene, said they had all planned to meet at the nearby McDonald's restaurant to go to a 5 p.m. church service in Clinton, Md., but Watkins decided to fill her car up with gas first.

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