Multi-vehicle crash stalls traffic on 23

By Frank Lewis

March 13, 2014

By Frank Lewis


A spectacular multi-vehicle crash on U.S. 23 near milepost 3 in Portsmouth Thursday morning, kept Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers busy and traffic snarled for over an hour.

Portsmouth Post Commander Lt. M.L. Gore said a southbound vehicle driven by Willard T. Hughes, 48, of Portsmouth, swerved to avoid striking a vehicle which had already been involved in a separate crash, when he lost control on the icy roadway, sliding left of center. Hughes’ vehicle struck a 1998 GMC truck driven by Kelle C. Craft, 20, of Portsmouth. He continued on, striking a 2008 Chevrolet Tahoe Sienna, operated by Jennifer Hurd, 34, of Stout, Ohio, and then a 2008 Chevrolet Tahoe, driven by Jennifer Hurd, 34, of Stout Ohio.

Craft’s vehicle vehicle was shoved into a 2006 Toyota Sienna which was northbound in the right lane, driven by Candice E. Wells, 47, of Portsmouth. Craft’s vehicle then traveled into the southbound lane striking a 2009 Toyota Corolla driven by Edna M. Donini, 43, of Lucasville and a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt driven by Tracy L. Walters, 44, of Lucasville. Walters’ vehicle was shoved backwards into the northbound lanes where her vehicle then made contact with Wells’ vehicle.

Hughes and Walters were transported to Southern Ohio Medical Center with minor injuries, while Hurd and Craft sustained minor injuries and refused treatment at the scene.

The crash is still under investigation.

Frank Lewis can be reached at 740-353-3101, Ext. 252, or on Twitter @FrankLewispdt.