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Published: Thursday, 3/23/2006

Driver dies when car hits tree, flips over

The fatal accident on Collingwood Boulevard occurred about 8:30 last night. The fatal accident on Collingwood Boulevard occurred about 8:30 last night.

A 37-year-old woman was killed last night when the car she was driving hit a tree and flipped over on Collingwood Boulevard near Highland Avenue, authorities said.

The woman, whose name was being withheld pending notification of relatives, was pronounced dead at the scene, authorities said.

She was northbound in the driving lane of Collingwood about 8:30 p.m. when she swerved to avoid hitting traffic barrels, lost control, crossed all four lanes, and struck a tree on the west side of the road. The car flipped and landed on its roof on Collingwood, authorities said.

Police believe the woman was driving 50 to 55 mph, which is above the 35-mph speed limit.

Darla Murphy, 39, of South Toledo and her brother, Darrell Lee, 44, of West Toledo said the woman sped by them and before they knew it the car was upside down in the middle of the road.

"She shot by us real quick on the right lane," Mr. Lee said. "I got confused real quick because tail lights were on the wrong side of the road. Then I saw smoke and sparks everywhere."

Ms. Murphy quickly pulled over, and Mr. Lee called 911.

"I couldn't get myself together," Ms. Murphy said. "How quick that happened."

They went to see if they could help the woman but couldn't get the door open. Firefighters had to extricate the woman from the car.

Barry Nicholson, 42, was watching TV in his home, an upstairs unit of a duplex at 3263 Collingwood, when he heard a loud noise.

At first he thought it was a truck that had lost its load. But when he looked out the window, he saw the car sliding down the road.

"I heard it, looked out the window, and saw the car on its back," he said. "It was a big noise."

The tree that was hit is in front of Mr. Nicholson's home.

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