Great Smoky Mountains National Park Rangers were notified of a two vehicle accident on Newfound Gap Road (U.S. 441) just north of Collins Creek Picnic Area in North Carolina on Tuesday, Jan. 15 at 2:08pm.
Rangers reported that a southbound 4-door Chrysler SUV collided with a northbound National Park Service pickup truck. The driver of the SUV, a 24-year old female, was pronounced dead at the scene. The name of the deceased is being withheld pending family notification. Both the driver of the park vehicle and his passenger were transported to the local hospital for assessment.
North Carolina Highway Patrol is leading the accident investigation at the request of the Park. According to Chief Ranger Clay Jordan, “Normally, we complete the investigation of motor vehicle collisions within the park, but because two of our NPS employees were involved in the accident, we have asked the NC Highway Patrol to lead this investigation.”
In addition to Rangers, NC Highway Patrol, Cherokee Fire Department, and Cherokee Tribal EMS personnel responded to the wreck.