Officer killed in accident on I-95 bridge over Lake Marion
by Laura Stone | July 2, 2018 7:56 pm
Officer Carl Wiggins, a part time police officer with the Town of Summerton, was killed early Monday morning in North Santee on the I-95 near the crest of the bridge as it crosses Lake Marion. Traffic on I-95 was stopped for more than three hours as emergency personnel responded to the accident.
According to Lt. Bob Beres of the South Carolina Highway Patrol, Wiggins stopped his Chevy Blazer in the right-hand lane of southbound I-95 near mile marker 100. An 18-wheel tractor trailer struck Wiggins’ Blazer from behind.
“The driver [of the Blazer], who was entrapped, died on impact,” said Clarendon County Coroner Bucky Mock. “The driver was wearing a seat belt.” Mock identified the Blazer’s driver as 63-year-old Carl Wiggins of Holly Hill. While no autopsy will be held, Mock confirmed toxicology results are pending.
“The accident is under investigation by the South Carolina Multi-disciplinary Accident Investigation Team (MAIT),” said Beres, who stated the driver of the tractor trailer was not injured and no charges have been filed against him at this time.
According to Summerton Mayor Mac Bagnal, Wiggins had clocked out at the Summerton Police Department at 6:15 a.m. He left in his personal vehicle and was assumed to be headed home to Holly Hill. Going over the bridge, Wiggins ran out of gas and called someone for help. When the person called him back with a confirmation that help was on the way, Wiggins didn’t answer.
“He did a good job for he town,” said Bagnal. “In a recent Town Council meeting, we talked about police officers and what a good job they were doing. [Wiggins] was mentioned, and Chief Perdue stated he would like to have three more just like him.”
Bagnal confirmed there will be a donation fund set up to assist Wiggins’ family during this crisis.
“At the Council meeting next Tuesday, I’m sure there will be a hat passed. I’m sure we’ll be taking up donations for him,” said Bagnal. According to Bagnal, Donations can also be made at the Summerton Police Station and the Summerton Town Hall, although he is not yet sure of all of the details.
“We are praying for [Wiggins’] family and his friends. Even for the driver of the 18-wheeler. I heard he wasn’t hurt, but who knows about his emotional state,” said Bagnal.