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Collision on tractor leads to DUI arrest

POSTED: April 1, 2013 8:56 p.m.
Photo courtesy of ECSO/

Effingham Sheriff’s deputies allege that Michael Coules, 65, drove the tractor above on Highway 21 Saturday night without its lights on and while drinking a beer. The tractor was hit by another car, tying up traffic for two hours.

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A Springfield man was charged with driving under the influence Saturday night after causing a serious accident involving the tractor he was driving and a car.


According to the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office, Michael Coules, 65, was drinking alcohol while driving a John Deere farm tractor with no headlights. When Coules attempted to cross Highway 21 near Ralph Rahn Road, the tractor was hit by an oncoming Honda sedan.


Neither Coules nor the driver of the car was seriously injured.


“They both could’ve been killed,” said Effingham County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Detective David Ehsanipoor. “The tractor had no lights. The driver of the Honda didn’t see him.”


The impact of the crash caused “extensive damage” to the car and broke the tractor into three pieces, according to Ehsanipoor.


“Even with the tractor in three parts, Coules was still sitting in the tractor seat, drinking a beer,” Ehsanipoor said. “He tossed it in the ditch when deputies walked up. He tried blaming the vehicle for hitting him.”


Coules was taken to the Effingham County Jail.


The accident caused of portion of Highway 21 to be closed for about two hours.

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