Ooltewah Crash Sends Three to Hospital Reigniting Infrastructure Debate

OOLTEWAH ( WDEF) – “On Snow Hill, there’s no give at all. There’s nothing. One move and you’re either off the road or in the other lane and it’s what’s causing these accidents,” says Ursula Matchack, a mother of six who lives just off Snow Hill Road. Three people were sent to the hospital Monday night following a head on collision at the 6400 block of Snow Hill in Ooltewah. One official says five people have died on this stretch of road since 2018.

“I do have teenage children that drive and for sure we have them go Ooltewah-Georgetown and come Providence just because this road is so dangerous,” says Matchack.

The district’s county commissioner says the solution isn’t an easy one. “The problem is people don’t want to lose their land to widen the road. I have talked to a couple engineers and suggest we use our right away to widen the road at least one tire width on each side and build up some shoulders which would make it somewhat more safe,” says district 9 Hamilton County Commissioner Dr. Steve Highlander.

The dilemma is common all over fast-growing and undeveloped regions of Hamilton County. Officials want the new income for their towns but it comes at the price of beautiful land being developed and safety since the infrastructure can’t support all the new growth.

“Snow Hill especially is dangerous. It has not changed since the 50 years I’ve been driving on it. And I now have a 15-year-old grandson with a learner’s permit who will be driving on this road. The safety of it concerns me,” says Highlander.

Dr. Highlander says conversations have begun with the mayor and county commission on a fix to this road that is only growing older while the population continues to grow around it.

Tri-Community Volunteer Fire Department says the three victims in Monday night’s crash were released with non-life threatening injuries.

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Hamilton County, Local News