Please keep Officer Kenneth “Greg” Surles along with his family and friends in your thoughts and prayers.
Police officer seriously injured in accident
PELL CITY – A police officer was seriously injured Wednesday afternoon when an 18-wheel truck slammed into the side of his police car.
The officer was identified as Kenneth “Greg” Surles, who has been with the Pell City Police Department for about six years.
The accident happened shortly before 4 p.m. at the intersection of U.S. 231 and Cropwell Drive/Kings Circle.
Surles was apparently crossing U.S. 231 from Kings Circle when the truck, traveling south on U.S. 231, hit the driver’s side of the squad car.
The truck jackknifed along U.S. 231, and the impact sent Surles’ police vehicle into a ditch south of the intersection. The accident closed down U.S. 231 for almost 3 hours Wednesday.
Authorities identified the driver of the truck as James Michael Scogins, 44, of Pell City. According to radio transmission, Scogins was taken to St. Vincent’s St. Clair in a private vehicle. Information about Scogins’ injuries was not available late Wednesday.
A Lifesaver helicopter transported Surles to University Hospital in Birmingham, where he was taken into surgery with apparent internal injuries.
Police Chief Greg Turley said Surles, who is the nephew of St. Clair County Sheriff Terry Surles, was initially unconscious when rescue workers first arrived at the scene, but he later became conscious and appeared stable before being taken to Birmingham.
Turley said Surles also possibly suffered a broken right leg in the accident.
“He took a heck of a lick,” he said.
Turley said since the accident, he has had numerous calls from people concerned about Surles.
“My phone has been burning up ever since the accident,” he said.
Turley was out of town when the accident occurred but was on his way back to Pell City.
He said Surles was on duty at the time of the accident.
“We’re asking for everyone’s thoughts and prayers for him and his family,” Turley said.
The Alabama State Troopers Birmingham Post is investigating the accident. An official cause of the accident had not been released by authorities late Wednesday.
Surles is a 1997 graduate of St. Clair County High School in Odenville.
His first job in law enforcement was with the Talladega County Sheriff’s Department. He worked with that department for two years before taking a job with the Odenville Police Department.
Surles worked as a police and K-9 officer with the Odenville Police Department from 1999-2002, when he joined the Pell City Police Department.