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Driver killed in Thursday I-26 accident identified

The crash happened in Lexington County after a driver, for unknown reasons, crossed the median.
Credit: SCDOT

LEXINGTON COUNTY, S.C. — The Lexington County Coroner's Office has identified a Georgia man killed in an accident on I-26 earlier in the week.

According to Lexington County Coroner Margaret Fisher, 49-year-old John Richard Kotleba of Alpharetta, Georgia was heading east on the interstate near mile marker 127 on Thursday afternoon when his vehicle crossed the median and collided with an SUV heading west and then hit a tractor-trailer head-on.

Kotleba was wearing his seatbelt at the time of the crash but died at the scene. The driver of the tractor-trailer was taken to an area hospital. His injuries aren't known at this time.

The crash happened about 11 miles away from the I-77 and I-26 interchange and on the stretch of interstate between Old Sandy Run and Highway 21. It occurred just after 1 p.m. but tied up traffic in both directions for roughly three hours.

The South Carolina Highway Patrol is investigating the crash. No details regarding why the vehicle crossed the center line have been released.