Quitman Accident Throws Man Through Storefront; Driver Arrested - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Quitman Accident Throws Man Through Storefront; Driver Arrested

The back of the red station wagon, now twisted metal was hit from behind by an 18-wheeler.

"[I've] been here since 1982. Never seen anything like this in Quitman, Texas," says David Barry who witnessed the accident.

Barry says the tanker ran the stop sign making a left turn too fast and too out of control.

"Oh I heard a god awful crash. Because there was a vehicle settin' here that he rear ended and knocked on into the middle of the road.  It was a terrible sound.

You can still see the track marks from where the 18-wheeler took the turn.  Parked in its path another vehicle, that the driver was getting out of.

The 18-wheeler hit it the car from behind, hitting the man and launching him through the plate glass window of a storefront.

"[The victim] was alert and talking to paramedics and EMT's. He's not in good shape, but he was not in bad shape," says Sergeant Wes Criddle with the Quitman Police Department.

Photos, courtesy of KMOO, show the driver of the 18-wheeler, Wilford Flanagan being given a field sobriety test and shortly thereafter getting arrested.

"This is a four-way stop, so everybody stops and has the courtesy to let the other man go. Had someone thought he was going to stop and went ahead, there would be a death here on the square today," says Barry.

Car parts were still scattered on the square, even the victim's sole white hat lay among the debris.

On top of Flanagan's driving while intoxicated charge, there are more questions to be answered as the investigation is still on-going.

The spillage at the scene was diesel fuel, that was cleaned up.

The victim is identified as Allan Gene Whipple of Yantis. At last check he was listed in "serious" condition.

Christine Nelson reporting. cnelson@kltv.com

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