Two men die in accident

Published 1:09 am Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Two men from Carriere died in a car accident early Monday morning in Hancock County.

The two were identified as 41 year-old Kenneth Smith and 58 year-old Mike Penton, both of Carriere, said Mississippi Highway Patrol Public Information Officer Cpl. Johnny Poulos.

The accident took place at about 12:30 a.m. Monday just west of Waveland. Both Penton and Smith were in 1998 Chevy Z71 pickup truck headed east in the west bound lane when the accident took place, Poulos said. The reason the truck was in the wrong lane is still under investigation.

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Smith, who was identified as the driver of the vehicle, struck a 2005 GMC pickup head on, forcing the Z71 into the median. Penton was ejected from the truck and the truck came to rest on top of him, before bursting into flames with Smith still inside, Poulos said.

Both Smith and Penton died at the scene.

Two people were in the GMC, 24 year-old Jessica Cook of Robert La. and the driver, John Vicknair, 28, of Springfield, La. Both Cook and Vicknair were taken to Hancock Medical Center for treatment of moderate injuries.

Poulos said the possible involvement of drugs or alcohol, as always with fatal accidents, is still under investigation.