BY MELANIE BUCK –
A fatal collision was reported to Polk County authorities shortly after 1 p.m. on Monday, April 6, 2015. A 2002 Ford Van was northbound on U.S. Hwy. 71 when it collided with a 1975 Peterbilt semi tractor-trailer around the Six-Mile Hill area between Hatfield and Cove.
Latosha Nicole Leather, age 23 of Lockesburg, Ark., was driving the van when she lost control, spun around 180 degrees, and entered the southbound lane backwards and was struck by the semi, who was southbound. Leathers, her 5-year old daughter, and 20 month-old son all received fatal injuries and were pronounced deceased at the scene at 2:28 p.m. Sources also report that Leathers was pregnant, as well.
The driver of the semi, Marla Gayle Pipes, age 52 of Redwater, Tex., survived the accident but was very shaken and upset, according to witnesses on the scene.
Fire Departments from Hatfield and Cove assisted in the extrication of an occupant of the van. Polk County Sheriffs Department also assisted while Arkansas State Trooper Cpl. Mike Thomas worked the scene of the accident.