TYLER, TX – A Tyler man has died in a multi-vehicle wreck on Loop 323 near Pointe N. Dr. on Wednesday afternoon, according to Tyler Police Department. The victim has been identified as Jimmy Hayes, 75, of Tyler, and his family has been notified of the tragic event.
The investigation revealed that the wreck involved four vehicles that were in the eastbound turn lane of Loop 323, waiting to turn north onto Pointe N. Dr. at around 3:08 p.m. Hayes was driving eastbound in his Ford F-150 when he suddenly veered left from the straight lane of traffic into the turn lane and collided with the rear vehicle that was stopped there, causing a chain reaction that involved the next two vehicles, as well.
One of the occupants of the other vehicles was transported to a local hospital by EMS with non-life-threatening injuries, according to Tyler Police PIO Andy Erbaugh. The identities of the other drivers and passengers have not been released, and their conditions are unknown at this time.
The exact cause of the wreck is still under investigation, but Tyler Police have ruled out alcohol and drugs as factors. It is unclear whether Hayes suffered a medical emergency or was distracted or impaired in some way. No charges have been filed yet, pending the completion of the investigation and a review by the Smith County District Attorney’s Office.
The wreck caused significant traffic disruptions and delays in the area, as officers closed the eastbound lanes of Loop 323 at Pointe N. Dr. for several hours. Motorists were advised to seek alternate routes and avoid the area if possible.
Tyler Police and other emergency services personnel responded promptly to the scene and provided medical and logistical support to the victims and their families. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Mr. Hayes and all those affected by this tragedy.