Alcohol, no seatbelts cause of fatal accident

SALEM – A combination of alcohol and no seatbelts may have played a factor in a fatal car crash Friday evening west of Salem.

According to the Lisbon post of the Highway Patrol, Brooke Penick, 25, of Salem and Stephen W. Bell, 27, also of Salem were traveling east on U.S. Route 62 when the 1999 Chevrolet Lumina in which they traveled lost control, struck a ditch and overturned. Both Penick and Bell were ejected from the vehicle.

Penick was taken to Salem Regional Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead. Bell was flown to St. Elizabeth’s in Youngstown with serious injuries.

Neither occupant, according to reports, wore seatbelts and alcohol is suspected in the crash.

Sgt. Barry Thompson is handling the investigation, which continues as they determine who was the actual driver.

With yet another fatal car crash taking place in Columbiana County as a result of not using seatbelts, the patrol is heavily encouraging motorists to be extremely careful on the road.

“Columbiana County has experienced yet another fatal crash, in which the available seat belts have not been used and the occupants have been ejected from the vehicle,” the patrol said in a statement. “The Ohio State Highway Patrol is reminding all motorists to wear a seatbelt and do not drink and drive.”