Man at fault in two wrecks; one after the other

Four people taken to hospital Thursday morning
Jan. 25, 2013 @ 06:10 AM

Thursday morning was not the best day for Earl Thomas Burgin, II, 58, of Forest City.  He was involved in two separate motor vehicle crashes — one right after the other,  just  24 minutes apart. Fortunately Burgin, was not seriously injured, but he was at fault in both incidents.

According to the Forest City Police Sgt. Robert Rape, Burgin was driving his 2006 Ford pick-up truck in Forest City at 9:27 a.m. Thursday when he rear ended a 1997 Volvo driven by Patricia Childs Hollar, 41, of Spindale at the intersection of Hardin Road and Oak Street.

Sgt.  Rape charged Burgin with failure to reduce speed and expired inspection.

Hollar was transported to the hospital and later released.

At 9:51 a.m. Burgin was traveling west on US74A after being cleared from the Oak Street accident, and police said he failed to stop at a red light at Plaza Drive and Lowe's Blvd. and hit another pick-up truck that was pushed into 2010 Honda.

According to Patrolman Brian Gooch and Rape, Edward Joseph Gallawt, 69, of Bostic, was driving a 2000 Dodge pick-up truck and Tammy Head Matheny, 47, Forest City, was driving a 2010 Honda.

According the officers, Gallawt was pulling out of Lowe's Blvd., making a left turn onto US74A and Matheny was coming off Plaza Drive from WalMart, making a left, going west. Both drivers had the green turning arrow. 

Burgin was traveling west on US74A when he ran the stoplight and hit the pick-up truck in the driver's side and pushed the truck into the path of the Honda. Forest City firefighters used a Jaws-of-Life to prior the driver's side door from the Dodge truck.

Burgin, Gallawt and Matheny were transported to the hospital and according to a hospital spokesperson they were released from the emergency room.

Burgin was charged with failure to reduce speed and running a stoplight.

Rape said he talked with Burgin at the scene of the first accident and there was no indication there was anything wrong with Burgin that would prohibit him from driving.

He said, however, there will likely be further investigation into the accident.