WEST JEFFERSON — A woman was airlifted to Johnson City Medical Center on Tuesday, Nov. 6 after a two-car collision on N.C. Highway 16, near Zaloo’s Canoes.
According to N.C. Highway Patrol trooper Greg Taylor, A white Ford pickup, driven by Tayson W. Blevins, was carrying a trailer loaded with Christmas trees, when he fell asleep at the wheel. He was woken up by the sound of the horn from a red Subaru Crosstrek driving the other way. While asleep, the driver had drifted into the wrong lane, and couldn’t turn before colliding with the Subaru head-on. Both vehicles came to a rest on the right shoulder of the highway.
The driver of the Subaru, Donna K. Roland, appeared to have life-threatening injuries when emergency responders arrived at the scene. Taylor said that Roland was airlifted to Johnson City Medical Center in Johnson City, T.N., while her 10-year-old daughter, who was also in the car, was taken to Ashe Memorial Hospital for her injuries.
Taylor said that neither of the vehicles was considered drivable, and that neither had a front-left wheel after the accident. Taylor added that Blevins was charged with reckless driving.
The Hotel Tavern in West Jefferson, where Roland works, said in a Facebook post that Roland suffered fractures to multiple vertebrae, broken ribs and a clavicle and a collapsed lung. According to the Johnson City Medical Center ICU, where Roland is being treated, her condition is improving.
The Ashe Post & Times will provide updates for this story as they become available.