According to officials, the earlier crash that occurred today (3/4/17) on Maynardville Highway just south of the Maynardville City limit was contributed by drugs. A total of two arrests were made on the scene.
Around 12:30 PM Blake Effler (age 24 of Maynardville) was traveling north on Maynardville Highway when he struck a 1998 red Dodge pickup in the left rear. Effler then veered over into the on coming traffic of the south bound lane, striking a Nissan pickup head on.
Effler was being followed by Josh Gentry (24), who is a friend of Effler. After the crash, Gentry pulled aside on the highway.
The driver and minor passenger of the Nissan pickup truck were both extricated by PVFD firefighters and transported by Union County EMS to an area hospital. The driver has been listed in stable but critical condition. His identity has not been released. The Dodge pickup also contained a minor passenger that was unharmed. Effler was not injured in the accident either.
Effler and Gentry have both been arrested by Union County Sheriff’s Deputy Andrew Woods. Effler has been charged with Vehicular Assault, DUI 2nd Offense, Driving Left of Center, and Felony Reckless Endangerment. His bond has been set at $90,000.
Gentry was also discovered to be under the influence of an intoxicant while operating a motor vehicle. He has been charged with DUI, Possession Legend Drug, and Drug Paraphernalia. He is being held under a $20,000.00.
Look for the future edition of the Union News Leader paper for updates on this incident.