Crash Team members were called to the scene of a fatal one-car accident in Elba yesterday evening, but their initial investigation reveals no reason why the Toyota Highlander driven by 69-year-old Vincentia Smith veered off the roadway and slammed into a tree.
All they know at this time is Smith was westbound on North Byron Road at 4:44 p.m. when her vehicle crossed the eastbound lane, went off the roadway and hit the tree.
There were no skid marks.
Smith was unconscious when first responder's arrived. Mercy Flight was called, but she was apparently not stable enough for air transport, so she was taken to UMMC by Mercy EMS, where she was pronounced dead.
The location of the accident, North Byron Road, a tenth of a mile east of Log City Road, is just yards from where Elba resident Linda Brown was killed one year and eight days ago in a single-car accident.
It's too early to determine if there is any common factor between the two fatal crashes.
"It’s a straight road, you’ve got some hills, you’ve got some deer out here, any number of things could be a factor here, or not," said Investigator Timothy Weis. "It could be simply, she drifted off the road."
A medical examiner will try to determine if Smith, a resident of Miller Road, Elba, had a health issue that contributed to the crash and investigators will take a look at her car and try to determine if there were any mechanical issues.
"If (the mechanical inspection) comes back fine and the medical exam comes back fine, this could be one where we never know the reason," Weis said.
Assisting at the scene was the Elba Fire Department and State Police. The investigation is being conducted by Weis, Deputy Kevin McCarthy and Sgt. William Scott.