BLUFFTON, S.C. (WSAV) – Where Highway 278 and Buck Island Rd. meet is the most dangerous intersection in Bluffton with a total of 8 accidents with injuries in the past 8 months. Now the intersection has claimed a fatality, after a three-vehicle accident that killed 27-year-old Jesse Floyd and her unborn baby Tuesday.
“When she would be talking to students, she would make them feel like they were most important person at that moment,” said Brenda Blue, principal at Pritchardville Elementary where Floyd worked as a second-grade teacher in 2015.
A car turning off Highway 278 onto Buck Island Rd. stalled in the middle of the street. It was then hit by an oncoming van and thrown into traffic in the other lane, where the SUV Floyd and her husband were in hit it head on.
Floyd was 26 weeks pregnant, she and the baby were pronounced dead at the hospital around 11 p.m. on July 25. Her husband sustained non-life threatening injuries. Floyd was set to start at Hilton Head Island Elementary in the fall with her husband starting at Bluffton High School as well.
“She was always poised, always just cared deeply… even as a young teacher…” said Blue, “You look at professions, the death of a young person is always a tragic experience… and in this instance, instance, it’s just a terrible terrible tragedy.”
The yellow turn signal was installed in 2014. Its goal was to increase the flow of traffic and safety.
“We have seen several accidents at the Buck Island Road,” said Joy Nelson with the Bluffton Police Dept., “It’s such a wide intersection right there that you know perception is everything. If you’re at that turn arrow.. you don’t think it’s that far away, but you’re really crossing… you’re going uphill and you’re crossing three lanes of traffic.”
Many took to Facebook to protest the yellow turn signal saying enough is enough… and Bluffton PD agrees.
“I don’t think that yellow arrow should be there, that’s not up to us. That’s a state transportation decision,” said Nelson, “Maybe that yellow arrow should be looked at again and maybe it should be a green or red arrow.”
The Bluffton Police Collision Reconstruction Unit (CRU) is still investigating the fatal accident, but as of now, they have found there was a mechanical error in the car attempting to turn, and it was too late for the other cars involved to slow down.
For now, the Bluffton PD encourages drivers to avoid turning at the intersection whenever possible, even if turning on a different street takes a little longer, it could save a life.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help cover the family’s expenses for a memorial service here. (Please note: Processing fees may apply)