An accident on Tuesday left a car in the water under the Hwy 70 bridge in Kingston. Multiple emergency units responded to the scene around 7pm. The vehicle had three occupants, 19-year-old Joshua Shillings, 18-year-old Isaac Collins, and 21-year-old Robert Lawson, who all escaped just before the car was fully submerged. A passing pontoon boat, seeing the car going into the water, was able to get to the three and get them to the shoreline for help.
According to initial reports from sources, all indications are that the vehicle left the roadway in the curve just before the bridge heading eastbound, the car went over the embankment and into the water. Investigator Tony Guy with the Kingston Police Department stated in a press release that officers with the Kingston Police Department responded to West Race Street in reference to the crash. Officers came into contact with three occupants and upon investigation, it was found that Joshua Shillings was the driver of the 2005 gold Ford Taurus.
According to the report, the vehicle was traveling east on Roane State Hwy at a high rate of speed when the vehicle left the roadway on the right side of the Hwy 70 bridge and went into the Clinch River. All three occupants managed to get out of the vehicle after it crashed nearly 60 feet into the water. A nearby resident who helped the three out of the water was identified as Clay Badger, who lived across the water and rushed with his pontoon boat to get the three onboard.
Isaac Collins was transported to Roane Medical Center for what appeared to be non-life-threatening injuries. Joshua Shillings and Robert Lawson reported no injury. The vehicle was completely submerged upon the officer’s arrival and was unable to be retrieved. Joshua Shillings was cited for failure to provide proof of financial responsibility. The possibility of more charges is pending. The crash is being investigated by Officer David Choate and Sergeant Alex French.