I was on my way to AC when I passed it the first time. On the way back down 259 I was passed by the hearse and tow truck carrying the auto. Looked as if the car had burned. Passing the accident scene the area where the car went off the road showed evidence that there was a fire. Tragic.
When headed toward 259 on 20 there is a fairly aggressive left bend in the road and it dips down as well, just as you are passing the water tower. I know from one time that I was run off the interstate that once one set of wheels hits grass it is terribly difficult to control a vehicle. Maybe he was distracted, maybe he didn't know the road very well and was surprised by the turn and was going too fast. Certainly makes one crank up the caution level, though.
It was almost dark when I drove out Tuesday evening, but I thought I saw where the tree leaves were burned. It's the same place where we saw a big flatbed truck that ran off the road into the trees in the winter. That incident was a truck returning to town after delivering lumber / supplies to a construction project at the end of Hwy 20 and it happened right at dusk when visibility is a factor.
When I started to drive (and into my 20's) I thought the speed limit on Hwy 20 was 55 MPH. It was unmarked and I did not recall on my Alabama driving test that unmarked roads are 45 MPH by default. You know, a few years ago, they finally put 45 MPH speed limit signs on the ends of Hwy 20. It's easy to get to going 55 MPH down the high hill going towards the lake without realizing it. That curve at the water tower will creep up on you before you realize just how tight the curve is.
Yes, it is directly across from the water tower. You can see where trees and the earth are scorched. Until this happened, I never really noticed that curve and dip. I think it is possible that he encountered someone coming down the middle of the road, forcing him off the road and he lost control.
I think they do need some of those dangerous curve signs and a reset of the speed limit. I'm as guilty as anyone at driving fast down these back roads. But so many things can happen, including a deer leaping into road to encountering someone driving in the middle of the road. And on the summer weekends, there are a lot of people who come to the lake who aren't familiar with the roads.
I noticed yesterday someone put a basket of flowers on the scorched earth.