According to a report from the Carlisle Police Department, the intersection of West Park Street, U.S. Highway 70 and Bobby L Glover Highway (Arkansas Highway 13) was closed for several hours Thursday, Aug. 1, after a one-vehicle collision that claimed the life of a Lonoke County man.
At 3:48 a.m., the Carlisle Police Department received the first of several calls reporting a serious accident in which a vehicle had left the roadway and struck a power pole, the report said. Upon arrival to the scene, Cpl. Farris McClain arrived discover power lines strewn across both West Park Street and Bobby L. Glover. He also found a power pole, which had been sheared off at its base, lying next to a white GMC Sierra pickup, at the northeast corner of the intersection.
Although McClain was able to observe a male seated behind the steering wheel, he, nor Southern Emergency Medical Service personnel, were unable to approach him due to the danger of possible energized power lines, in which the pickup was entangled.
After Entergy crews secured the scene, emergency personnel were able to gain access to the pickup and identify the driver as 55-year-old Ronnie Elam of Lonoke. Coroner Mark Thomas pronounced Elam dead at 4:49 a.m.
Elam, a 26-year employee of Lennox Industries in Stuttgart, had apparently been on his way to work and was traveling eastbound on U.S. Highway 70, when his pickup left the roadway and struck the utility pole. The cause of death is still under investigation.
Carlisle police officers and Lonoke County Sheriff’s deputies rerouted traffic until approximately 10 a.m., when power crews were able to remove the lines from the intersection and restore power to the area.
As of Tuesday morning, Carlisle Chief of Police Eric Frank said he has not received an official cause of death.