VALDOSTA -- A Nashville woman was killed and her daughter injured in a two-vehicle accident on I-75 Monday morning, according to Georgia State Patrol.

Atwell Metts, 84, of Nashville, was pronounced dead at the scene at 8:25 a.m., said Charles Exum, Lowndes County coroner.

The cause of death was the result of massive head and neck injuries when Metts was ejected from the vehicle onto the highway during the accident, Exum said.

Sgt. Lavon Prine, Georgia State Patrol, said the accident occurred at the vicinity of the one-mile post marker on I-75 at about 7:30 a.m. GSP troopers were notified at 7:34 a.m. and arrived on the scene at 7:46 a.m.

According to the accident report, a 1998 Montero Sport driven by Metts' daughter, Catherine Gaskins, 56, of Nashville, with Metts as a passenger, was headed in the southbound lane when the vehicle hydroplaned, causing it to strike the guardrail on the median.

Impact with the guardrail caused the vehicle to bounce back into the southbound traffic, where it went under the rear transom of a 2001 Freightliner tractor-trailer driven by Barry McMichen, 52, of Stockbridge, the GSP report said. The tractor-trailer is owned by RCS Courier Service Inc. of Stockbridge.

"At some point, Mrs. Metts was ejected onto the highway," Prine said.

The tractor-trailer's rear transom was damaged, the trooper said. The vehicle was finally able to stop just as it crossed the Florida state line.

Gaskins sustained injuries and was transported by ambulance to South Georgia Medical Center, where she remains in stable condition, SGMC officials said.

Charges are pending under further investigation by a Specialized Collision and Reconstruction Team, Prine said.



To contact reporter Rip Prine, please call 244-3400, ext. 237.



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