Troopers: Church van flips in Georgia, killing at least 4 and injuring 13 others

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Ga. church van flips, killing 4 and injuring 13

BLAKELY, Ga. — A church van overturned after its tire blew Sunday on a southwestern Georgia highway, killing at least four and injuring 13 others, authorities said.

Georgia State Patrol spokesman Gordy Wright said in an e-mail that 17 people were aboard the van when it rolled over on a highway south of Blakely. No other vehicles were involved.

Wright said the group was on its way to Florida when a rear tire blew out, causing the driver to lose control. The vehicle hit the median and flipped several times, ejecting some of the passengers.

The 1987 Dodge Ram Wagon van, with an intended capacity of 15 passengers, was from the Tabernacle of Prayer and Deliverance in Columbus, Wright said. A phone listing for the church was disconnected.

Early County Coroner Todd Hunter declined to release names or ages of the victims, but troopers told WALB-TV in Albany that they ranged in age from young children to adults.

Wright didn’t immediately respond to an e-mailed request for further information on the severity of the survivors’ injuries, but said some were taken to area hospitals.

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