Victim identified in fatal collision between golf cart, tractor-trailer in Florence County

Victim identified in fatal collision between golf cart, tractor-trailer in Florence County

FLORENCE COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – One person was killed Monday afternoon in Florence County after the golf cart they were driving was struck by a tractor-trailer.

According to South Carolina Highway Patrol Lance Cpl. Matt Southern, the collision happened at 4:43 p.m., Monday on Stagecoach Road.

The driver of the golf cart was traveling northbound on Stagecoach Road and attempted to turn into a private drive. The vehicle was then struck by a 1981 Peterbuilt tractor-trailer, according to Southern.

Florence County Coroner Keith von Lutcken said the victim has been identified as Jimmy Halley Bacot, 83, of Florence County. He was the only occupant of the cart. The driver of the truck was not injured, he added. The crash is under investigation by the SCHP.

Highway patrol said on a secondary highway like Stagecoach road, it is illegal to ride a golf cart, because the speed limit is more than 35 mph.

Dorothy Collins is Bacot's cousin, who he was visiting while riding his golf cart on Monday evening. She said, "By the time I saw it I shut my eyes, and I knew it was over. The flash that I saw, I knew what the next second was going to happen, if it hadn’t already happened. I mean I was thinking in seconds like that. It’s too far gone for Jimmy to stop, and I said he’s here he’s gone, that’s what I said, he’s here he’s gone.”

Collins lives just houses down from Bacot and said he died doing something he did almost every day. Ride his golf cart around the land he farmed. Highway patrol trooper said no one should be riding golf carts on a road where cars are also driving up to 55 mph. Collins agreed and said, "It's too busy ever since they widened that road it's like a four lane highway. People go by here at a high rate of speed all the time."

She said she was going to walk outside her house to meet Bacot just seconds before the crash. She heard tries screeching on the road leaving behind skid marks. She said, "I knew it was time for him to be here and when I looked, I saw that ball of smoke and I saw just part of the thing he was in, and I knew what had happened. I knew then there was nothing I could do to help him, I said I need to get help, so I called 911."

Although the crash is not how his family will remember him. Instead, Collins said she will think of his service, his farming and involvement at church. Collins thought about their last conversation together. "He said to me you know we are all getting old, and I said tell me about it. He said we can't live forever… and that was the last time he was over and said that," said Collins.

Funeral services will be Wednesday afternoon at 4 p.m. at the families home church, Elim Baptist Church in Effingham.

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