On October 10, 2003, the Tryonota Fire Department responded to a motor vehicle accident on highway NC 279, also known as Dallas-Cherryville highway. The call was paged out at 3:56 am as a single car accident with the vehicle over turned.
Upon arrival on the scene it was determined that that the vehicle had struck a tree, spun around and rolled over into a second tree and wrapped around the second tree, pinning the victim inside. The Jeep Cherokee suffered such damage that only the victims hand was accessible.
Gaston County EMS and the Gems supervisor arrived on the scene. Dallas Rescue also arrived shortly after. It was determined that the driver had suffered fatal injuries upon impact. The Jeep was then righted on it's wheels to insure that there were no other victims under the first victim or under the vehicle. The fire personnel then used the Hurst extrication tools to gain access to the victim.
Chief Tony Cooper noted that this was the most badly damaged vehicle that he had seen in recent memory. Bobby Yeomans, the departments Chaplain said that this was the worst accident that he had responded to in almost 3 years on the department.
Traffic was completely shut down on NC 279 for over 2 hours as the NC State Highway Patrol conducted the investigation. The Gaston County Police also assisted on the scene and provided traffic control.
The victim was not wearing a seat belt and suffered massive trauma.