WEST LAFAYETTE -- The Zanesville post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol is continuing to investigate a fatal accident that occurred Dec. 5 at approximately 7:40 p.m. on County Road 16 -- in an area commonly known as Miller's Dip.
Coshocton County Coroner Dr. R.D. Gwinn pronounced Charles R. Fortney Jr., 33, of Conesville, and a passenger in Fortney's vehicle, Harold L. West, 44, of Middleburg, Fla., formerly of Coshocton, dead at the scene. Neither were reportedly wearing their installed safety belts.
According to patrol, Fortney lost control of his red 2002 Dodge Stratus and slid sideways on the roadway, going left of center and into the path of the vehicle driven by Gene W. Craddock II, 20, of West Lafayette. Craddock's 2007 Dodge Caliber struck Fortney's vehicle in the side, shearing it in half. The front section of the Fortney vehicle came to rest about 240 feet from the collision site.
Craddock was transported from the scene by Coshocton County EMS to Coshocton County Memorial Hospital and from there to the Ohio State University Medical Center via MedFlight with non-life threatening injuries.
The Zanesville post of the patrol said alcohol is suspected as a factor. Blood samples were drawn at the scene with test results unknown as of yet.