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Local News

Blountville crash victims remain hospitalized

February 29th, 2012 3:20 pm by Rain Smith

The two victims of a Tuesday head-on vehicle collision in Blountville remained hospitalized as of Wednesday afternoon.

Dalya Qualls, public information officer for the Tennessee Department of Safety, reports the 17-year-old juvenile driver remains in critical condition. He was initially flown from the crash site on State Route 394 to Kingsport's Holston Valley Medical Center. He has since been transferred to the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville.

The driver of the other vehicle has been identified as Ellis E. Hicks, 62, of Kingsport. Wellmont spokesperson Jim Wozniak said Hicks was in good condition at Bristol Regional Medical Center.

The crash occurred at 2:34 p.m. It forced the Tennessee Highway Patrol to close a section of 394, just south of Franklin Drive, for more than two and a half hours.

According to witness statements to police, two cars driven by 17-year-old males were street racing. Witnesses reported one of the cars, a Honda Accord, swerved into oncoming lanes of traffic to pass a slower vehicle.

The juvenile's Accord then collided head-on with a Chevrolet pickup driven by Hicks. The other vehicle allegedly involved in the illegal race was not a part of the crash and stopped at the scene. Police say he had a female passenger.

An investigation is continuing with charges pending.

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