Last Updated: Saturday, Dec. 8, 9:12 a.m.
Matthew Yarborough, 14, was critically injured and a 12-year-old boy had minor injuries following a two-vehicle crash on Palm Coast Parkway and Old Kings Road at 7:40 this evening (Dec. 7). Two adults involved in the crash–both drivers–were not injured.
The wreck diverted traffic patterns around the intersection for over 90 minutes.
Ann Yarborough was at the wheel of the four-door dark-gray Cobalt, driving south on Old Kings Road. Edward Blanford Sr., 32, was at the wheel of a white Chevrolet Silverado pick-up truck, driving east on Palm Coast Parkway. He said he had a green light, and couldn’t tell what direction the other car had been coming from at the time of the collision. (When he spoke briefly as he stood in front of his truck after the wreck, he was mostly concerned about the fate of the boy.)
When the Silverado struck the Cobalt, each vehicle went in opposite directions in an arc. The Cobalt ended up ramming into the median’s hedges, in front of the Palm Coast welcome sign, facing northeast. The Silverado ended up in the grass in front of CVS Pharmacy, facing southeast.
The Silverado’s left-front had struck the Cobalt broadside, against the hinges of the passenger door, smashing in that side and requiring Matthew, who was sitting in the front passenger seat, to be extracted. The passenger side of the front windshield was smashed, as was the passenger window. Saturday morning authorities said “everybody is going to be OK,” including Matthew.
Flagler County Fire Flight was called in for a trauma evacuation, but the helicopter could not fly in the poor weather: the ceiling was low, and it drizzled lightly all evening. The boy was evacuated by ground to Halifax hospital’s trauma unit, in Daytona Beach. The 12-year-old boy, a friend of the Yarboroughs’, was sitting in the back seat. He had pain in his left knee, and was taken to Florida Hospital Flagler.
No one else was in the Silverado other than Blanford. All occupants of both vehicles are believed to be from Palm Coast. (The Silverado had Georgia license plates, but a bumper sticker from St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, the Catholic Church and school, on Belle Terre Parkway.)
It is not clear why the wreck unfolded as it did, but it is almost certain that one of the two vehicles blew through a red light, since one of the two vehicles violated the other’s right of way. The Florida Highway Patrol’s investigation was too preliminary this evening to determine who was at fault. The Palm Coast Parkway-Old Kings Road intersection is one of the locations of the city’s red-light spy cameras, installed at many locations ostensibly to improve intersection safety. The cameras record events such as wrecks at intersections, and have been useful to law enforcement investigators reconstructing wreck scenes.
The point of impact was clearly visible in the pavement, almost dead center of the intersection, if slightly to the south of the parkway’s median: The Cobalt from that point to the median dug an arc through the pavement.
The Palm Coast Fire Department, Flagler County Fire Rescue, the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office and the Palm Coast Fire Police responded to the scene. The fire police redirected traffic away from the center of the intersection, which was covered in shards, until fire police personnel cleared it, and a John’s Towing truck towed the two vehicles, around 9 p.m.
It was only the first of three serious wrecks overnight.