Traffic

Update: Driver identified in deadly I-95 wreck in Hardeeville

The driver of a tractor-trailer died this morning after running off Interstate 95 in Hardeeville.

James Matthew Eddins, 75, of Moncure, NC, was found dead this morning in the median of northbound I-95, Jasper County Coroner Martin Sauls III said. The tractor trailer hit several trees; however, Sauls said it appears his death might have been caused by a medical condition and not from the impact. He said the tractor trailer mowed down the trees it hit. An autopsy will be conducted, he said.

Hardeeville Police Chief Sam Woodward said the accident occurred near mile marker 13 at about 7:30 a.m.

The driver ran off the interstate, went down an embankment and hit several trees just off the highway, Woodward said.

The cause of the accident is still being investigated. The trailer was empty, and the driver was the only occupant. No other vehicles were involved.

Eddins was an independent trucker.

His son was riding ahead of him in a tractor trailer and looked in his rearview mirror and no longer saw his father. He called on his CB radio, but his dad did not answer. Another trucker answered and mentioned the wreck. By the time the son had reached the wreck scene, EMS and firefighters were there, Sauls said.

March 1-2, 2015 Only 35 miles of Interstate 95 run through Jasper County. But the short stretch is deadly -- because of trees. More motorists are dying in tree-related wrecks along this main artery to Hilton Head Island than anywhere else along I-95 in South Carolina. And nothing is being done to reverse the deadly trend. Our two-day series explores the emotional and financial costs of the wrecks and why fixing it is harder than you'd think. | READ
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