Oneida, TN (2018-10-16) Two people were seriously injured Monday afternoon in a grinding head-on collision on a secondary road in Oneida.
Reatha Hill, 68, of Huntsville and Bruce A. Kennedy, 56, of Oneida were seriously injured in a two-vehicle accident that occurred in the 1000 block of Buffalo Road around 3:00 p.m. Monday afternoon. According to a preliminary report from the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Kennedy allegedly crossed the center line, resulting in the crash.
Authorities say that Kennedy was traveling westbound on Buffalo Road, when he allegedly crossed into the eastbound lane. Hill reportedly steered off the road attempting to avoid the collision, but the pair met head on. Witnesses to the crash say neither driver appeared to have time to brake prior to the accident, as the two cars collided with tremendous force. As result of the collision, Hill’s 2004 Ford Taurus spun sideways and ended up climbing an embankment on the eastbound shoulder of the roadway. Kennedy’s 2004 Dodge Caravan reportedly spun around and came to rest sideways in the middle of the road.
Hill was trapped in the wreckage of her car for nearly 45 minutes, as emergency crews from the Scott County Sheriff’s Office, Scott County Ambulance Service, Scott County Rescue Squad, and Pine Hill Fire Department worked feverishly to free her. Family members say Hill was critically injured in the accident, suffering fractures of both legs, an arm, an ankle, and multiple ribs, along with multiple spinal fractures. She reportedly underwent emergency surgery for internal bleeding. Authorities say that Hill was not wearing her seat belt.
Kennedy reportedly suffered multiple broken ribs in the crash, along with other injuries. He reportedly was wearing his safety restraint at the time of the accident.
Both were transported from the scene by the Scott County Ambulance Service to the Scott County Airport, where a pair of LifeStar air ambulances airlifted them to a Knoxville hospital. LifeStar reportedly landed at the airport because of inclement weather conditions in the Oneida area.
According to the report, charges are pending against Kennedy.