The State Highway Patrol said North Carolina Senate candidate Gene McIntyre was driving “too fast for conditions” when his truck drove off the right shoulder of a Stanly County road and rolled over on Wednesday, which sent him to the hospital.
McIntyre, who’s home and recovering now, said the police report is not correct. However, when asked to elaborate, McIntyre declined to make any further comment.
McIntyre spoke briefly with the Daily Journal on Monday from his home in New London.
According to First Sergeant Sam Smith of the NC Highway Patrol covering Stanly County, two conditions led to the accident; “exceeding speed for conditions” and “over-correcting/over-steering.” Smith said the report showed clear weather at the time of the accident.
“The report says the truck ran off the road, struck a ditch bank, rolled over and came to a stop,” said Smith, who said the report showed McIntyre with a “normal physical condition,” or in other words, not intoxicated.
McIntyre was released from the hospital Friday following the single-car accident.
The retired educator and Stanly County commissioner was on his way to campaign in Rowan County when the accident occurred, McIntyre’s campaign staff said. The accident report completed by Trooper Allen McLester said that McIntyre’s 2005 Chevrolet pick up ran off the right shoulder of Saw Mill Road in Stanly County.
The crash happened at 2:20 p.m. Wednesday. When McLester arrived, the vehicle was on its side and immobilized in “a private vehicular area.” The report said that McIntyre appeared to be driving 60 mph in a 55-mph zone near a curve when he lost control of the truck.
No charges were filed. According to a highway patrol official, the writing of tickets is left to the trooper’s discretion in situations like McIntyre’s. Stanly County EMS took McIntyre to Stanly Regional Hospital. From there he was taken to Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, where he remained until Friday, according to his campaign.
The Highway Patrol report said that approximately $12,000 damage was done to McIntyre’s vehicle.
“I think his wife is going to make him take a couple of days off,” said McIntyre’s campaign manager Elizabeth Edwards. Edwards expected McIntyre to be back on the road campaigning this week.
“We are at home and he is recovering nicely,” said the candidate’s wife, Sue McIntyre, on Monday.
McIntyre’s campaign released this statement over the weekend: ” … Under the suggestion of his doctors, he is going to take a few days off before returning to the campaign trail. Both he and Sue would like to thank everyone for their prayers and well wishes. Gene is ready to spend the next 11 days continuing to spread his message for the need of a conservative, effective Senator for the people of District 25.”
The Laurinburg Exchange contributed to this report.
— Staff Writer Dawn M. Kurry can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 15, or by email at email@example.com.