Authorities say three people died in a multi-vehicle crash on Interstate 85 in Anderson County that closed down part of the highway for hours.
South Carolina Highway Patrol Lance Cpl. Scot Edgeworth says two tractor-trailers, a sport utility vehicle and a pickup truck hauling a boat collided about 11 a.m. Saturday.
Deputy Coroner Josh Shore says three people in three separate vehicles died at the scene.
Shore said Clay Lashawn Johnson, 38, of Charlotte, NC was unrestrained as he drove a tractor trailer which was headed northbound; Eddie W. Wyatt, 69, of Rockmart, GA drove the southbound tractor trailer, which cut across the median, and into Johnson's truck; Jeremy Scott Wilson, 33, a NC attorney who lived in Blacksburg, SC, had been driving a black Toyota Tundra, pulling a boat. Shore said Wilson's wife had been in Gaffney, SC when Wilson left Sunday morning on his way to fish at Lake Hartwell.
Emergency responders had to use rappelling gear to get to the wreckage.
Shore says a man and woman who were traveling together in a 4-Runner were flown to a Greenville hospital in stable condition. One was released Saturday; the other had minor injuries.
On Monday, Greg Shore, the Anderson County coroner, said an autopsy showed Wyatt did not have any medical issues that would have directly caused the wreck. However, Shore said based on witness accounts and statements from Wyatt's family he believes Wyatt fell asleep behind the wheel.
"We understand by talking to his family, that he has had some sleep apnea problems and had been out of work and had just returned back to the job," Shore said.
Troopers reopened the southbound lanes about 1 p.m. By Saturday night, all northbound lanes were reopened.
Copyright 2011 FOX Carolina. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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