Fatal Accident Claims Region 8 Man's Life

CRAIGHEAD COUNTY (KAIT) - One Region 8 man was killed Saturday after an accident was caused by a large dust cloud.

Stephen Douglas Cremeens, 45, of Newport was killed when his Jeep crossed the center line, striking a Maroon Chevrolet pick-up truck driven by Jerry Ellis.

Ellis and Joe Brandon, his passenger, were transported to St. Bernard's Medical Center in Jonesboro for treatment of leg injuries.

"One vehicle did cross the center line, hit another vehicle. We do have one that has deceased. The other two are currently at St. Bernard's hospital being treated," said Corporal Tony Austin.

Austin said a third vehicle, driven by Jeffery Duty, hit the side of Ellis' car. He was uninjured.

"There was really a whole, a bunch of sand," said Duty. "I was behind the jeep and I was driving. I seen the maroon truck and then I seen the jeep and then I seen them both hit and I had just enough time to hit my brakes."

Arkansas State Police shut down Highway 226 between Highway 349 and County Road 155 for three hours while troopers cleared the scene.

"This morning with the winds blowing the way they were here on 226, we had a field, the sand was blowing extremely bad, just a fine powder of sand," said Austin.

Police and witnesses said Saturday's dust cloud was unusual.

"There wasn't anything going on. It was just a field that had been worked sometime this winter, the wind blowing the way it is picked up the sand, just into a fine powder and was blowing it across the highway when the accident occurred," said Austin.