Truck accident claims Kershaw man

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By Reece Murphy

A head-on collision on Gold Mine Highway (S.C. 601) claimed the life of a Kershaw man, Monday, June 17.

The accident happened about 5:10 p.m. in the Flat Creek community near Haile Gold Mine, according to emergency radio chatter.

Lancaster County Coroner Mike Morris identified the deceased Tuesday afternoon as 61-year-old Ronnie Lee Cranford of Kershaw.

S.C. Highway Patrol Lance Cpl. Brent Kelly said the accident occurred when Cranford, who was headed north on Gold Mine Highway in a 2007 Chevrolet pickup, crossed the center line and struck a southbound 2004 International truck head-on.

Kelly said the impact caused the International cargo truck to catch fire, though the driver, Charles Goings, 34, of West Columbia, escaped with minor injuries and was “out and walking around,” according to emergency personnel.

A plume of thick, black smoke was visible in the distance as rescue workers rushed to the rural area. 

Cranford was pronounced dead at the scene, Kelly said.

Both men were wearing their seat belts.

Lancaster County Fire Marshal Stephen Blackwelder said the fire consumed the passenger compartment of Cranford’s pickup truck and a significant portion of the cargo truck before firefighters from Flat Creek and Kershaw extinguished the flames.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Morris said his office was still waiting for preliminary autopsy reports to determine the cause of Cranford’s death. Alcohol was not a factor in the accident, he said.

Had he lived, Cranford would have celebrated his 62nd birthday today, June 19.


Contact reporter Reece Murphy at (803) 283-1151