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Published: Thursday, 2/10/2005

Crash kills Williams County woman, 19


Slippery, snow-covered roads early yesterday caused dozens of traffic accidents throughout the region, including one in Williams County that resulted in the death of a 19-year-old woman and closed U.S. 6 for about an hour.

Snow started falling in extreme northwestern Ohio about 5 a.m. and spread eastward, reaching Cleveland by late morning, according to the National Weather Service.

By 7 a.m., nearly a half-inch of snow had fallen at Toledo Express Airport.

In southern Williams County, southwest of Bryan, Joanie L. Burke was pronounced dead after she lost control of her car and crashed with a Jeep about 7:25 a.m.

Ms. Burke, of Edgerton, Ohio, was eastbound on U.S. 6, west of State Rt. 576, when her car crossed the center line and into the path of a westbound Jeep driven by Jeff Yancy of Camden, Mich., according to troopers at the Ohio Highway Patrol's Defiance post.

His Jeep struck her car on the passenger side and spun 180 degrees. Ms. Burke's car went off the north side of U.S. 6 and into a ditch.

Ms. Burke was pronounced dead at Community Hospitals of Williams County, where Mr. Yancy, 43, was treated. Both drivers were wearing seat belts, troopers said.

No charges are anticipated, according to the patrol.

The Williams County sheriff's department received reports of 18 vehicles off the road between about 6 and 9:30 a.m.

Henry County sheriff's deputies reported more than 18 crashes, and authorities in Fulton County reported about a dozen during the morning drive time.

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