By Nita Johnson
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — Slick, snowy roads resulted in a fatal accident that took the life of a Gray, Ky. man Tuesday.
The crash closed Ky. 770 in southern Laurel County while accident reconstructionists surveyed the scene in which a Jeep Cherokee hit head-on with a Chevrolet Tahoe, just past Love’s Truck Stop.
James Edward Poe, 32, of Gray was traveling westbound on Ky. 770 around 3:06 p.m. when his Cherokee struck the Tahoe driven by 48-year-old Kevin Carroll of Calvin, Ky. After the crash, both vehicles came to rest blocking the roadway.
The passenger in the Cherokee, 51-year-old Robert Poe also of Gray, was transported from the scene but died en route to Baptist Health Corbin. James Poe received serious injuries and was also taken to the Corbin hospital. Carroll, the sole passenger in the Tahoe, received possible injuries but declined transport for medical treatment.
The investigation, which was conducted by Laurel County Sheriff’s personnel - Senior Sgt. Greg Poynter, Deputy Robbie Grimes, Deputy Josh Scott and Lt. Chuck Johnson, who is also an accident reconstructionist. During the investigation it was discovered James Poe was driving on a DUI-suspended license, had no insurance, and no registration plates. He was issued citations for these offenses and was given a court date.
The roadway where the accident occurred was closed for approximately two hours while the reconstruction and clean-up took place. Motorists planning to travel in that area were urged to seek an alternative route while the investigation took place. Ky. 770 was reopened around 6 p.m. that evening.
The cause of the accident remains under investigation.
Other agencies who assisted at the accident scene included Ambulance Inc. of Laurel County, Laurel County Emergency Management Director Abby Hale, Whitley County Coroner Andy Croley, and members of the London-Laurel County Rescue Squad and West Knox Volunteer Fire Department.
Poe is the second traffic fatality in Laurel County this year. The first traffic-related death occurred when a vehicle carrying a family from Ontario, Canada hit black ice on Interstate 75 on January 6, spun around and slammed into a semi-truck near the 36 mile marker in the southbound lane.