Athens Review, Athens, Texas

May 3, 2014

Investigation continues on Thursday wreck, car explosion

Rich Flowers
The Athens Review

Athens — An afternoon car crash on Thursday killed a 42-year-old man when the vehicle hit a tree, and exploded into flames on Farm-to-Market Road 2494, west of Athens.

The Texas Department of Public Safety has turned the case over to the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office for investigation. The name of the man has not been released.

The original 9-1-1 call came in shortly after 1 p.m. by witnesses at the scene, about 1.2 miles west of Loop 7 near the Dogwood Estates Edition.

Sue Cooper, whose house is closest to the accident scene, said her husband, Ron Cooper,  was the first to the wreckage, but was unable to rescue the occupant before the vehicle burst into flames. The fire fully-enveloped the car and the tree struck by the vehicle.

Rachel Cooper said she was sitting in a chair and heard a loud noise that shook the house. She said she heard two explosions coming from the car.

The Southside Volunteer Fire Department responded to the emergency call, followed by the East Texas Medical Center EMS. A truck from the Caney Creek VFD also came to the scene.

DPS trooper Monica Carranza came to investigate the wreck. There were no visible signs that the driver had tried to stop the vehicle before he left the roadway.

Traffic was re-routed away from the crash scene on the two lane road while the wreck was investigated. The DPS finally cleared the scene at 7:50 p.m.

  Precinct 4 Justice of the Peace Kelly Harris responded to the wreck, and ordered the remains sent to the medical examiner, for positive identification.