SALTILLO – Two children were in critical condition Monday after a one-vehicle crash on U.S. Highway 45 just south of the Saltillo exit.
Police and witnesses said a white Ford Explorer carrying a family from Booneville was traveling south on U.S. 45 about 3 p.m. when a tire apparently blew out, causing the vehicle to flip over into the northbound lane and ejecting two passengers as it tumbled.
It came to a stop on its roof, the frame crushed and windows broken. Glass and school supplies were strewn all over the highway.
“It flipped a lot,” said Donny Miller, who saw the incident from his own vehicle and stopped to offer assistance. “I kept wondering when it was going to stop flipping.”
Seven family members who were in the SUV were sent to the North Mississippi Medical Center, according to Saltillo Police Chief Steve Brooks.
Two children later were taken to Le Bonheur Children’s Medical Center in critical condition; they had been thrown from the vehicle.
According to Saltillo Police Capt. Prentice Brown, only two people in the car had been wearing seat belts – a 7-year-old and a 9-month-old. Both were relatively unharmed. Other chidren were ages 4, 5 and 9 years old.
It wasn’t immediately known which of the unrestrained children were ejected onto the highway.
Brown said it was a miracle they weren’t struck by other vehicles.
The family was traveling from Booneville to Tupelo.
Both lanes of traffic were blocked while emergency officials worked the scene. Traffic started moving again around 4 p.m.
Contact Emily Le Coz at (662) 678-1588 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Emily Le Coz/NEMS Daily Journal