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WCNC’s Larry Sprinkle released from hospital weeks after accident

WCNC forecaster Larry Sprinkle, recovering from injuries from a crash May 4.
WCNC forecaster Larry Sprinkle, recovering from injuries from a crash May 4. Courtesy WCNC

Veteran weather forecaster Larry Sprinkle has been released from the hospital, though he still faces a lengthy rehabilitation, WCNC (Channel 36) said Thursday.

Sprinkle, who has been at Charlotte’s NBC affiliate for 41 years, was seriously injured May 4 when the 2000 Buick he was driving slammed into a stopped pickup truck at about 35 mph in sluggish traffic on Interstate 485 near Ballantyne.

Rescuers had to use Jaws of Life equipment to extract Sprinkle from the wreckage. He was hospitalized with multiple breaks in his legs, a broken ankle, shattered wrist and cracked ribs. Surgeons installed rods and pins in both legs.

WCNC said Sprinkle is in a wheelchair and was fitted Wednesday with a walking boot on his right leg. He can stand with the help of a walker, the station said, and doctors believe he will be able to stand and put weight on both legs in about a month.

Sprinkle, 67, has said he doesn’t remember what happened when his car hit a 2014 Dodge Ram owned by Bravo Construction Co. of Charlotte about 7 p.m.

Authorities said the driver of the truck suffered no major injury. Sprinkle was cited by the N.C. Highway Patrol for failure to reduce speed.

Sprinkle, a Boone native, first came to Charlotte in 1969 as a disc jockey on the old WIST. He worked at radio stations WRPL, Big WAYS and WROQ. In 1976, Sprinkle went to Channel 36.

Mark Washburn: 704-358-5007, @WashburnChObs