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Incredibly Tragic Accident in Douglasville on I-20 Involving Several Children

Douglasville police released information regarding a serious car accident that happened over the weekend.

According to police, the accident happened near the Fairburn Road exit after 10 p.m.  An SUV carrying six people flipped several times at an exit ramp off I-20. The SUV was carrying a family from Atlanta, who were were on their way to visit another relative at a hotel off the exit. Five of the six individuals in the vehicle were children.

A seven-year-old boy died at the scene. Four of the people had to be flown by helicopter to local hospitals, after some of the passengers were thrown out of the SUV when it flipped over several times. Girls aged six, thirteen, and fifteen were transported to  a local children’s hospital, with the younger girls in critical condition, and the older girl in good condition. The remaining passenger, a fifteen-year-old girl, and the driver were also transported to local hospitals. The driver reportedly suffered only minor injuries.

Although the accident remains under investigation, police believe that the accident may have been caused by the driver of the SUV attempting to make the missed exit by cutting across the median, causing the vehicle to spin out of control.

Coincidentally, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a traffic safety advisory just last week, during Child Passenger Safety Week.

According to NHTSA, car accidents are the leading cause of death for children. In 2011, nearly two children under the age of 13 were killed, and 338 were injured every day while riding in automotive collisions (cars, vans, SUVs). Of the children killed, the percentage of children riding with no car seat or seat belt, the results were varied by vehicle type. Among those fatalities that occurred where the children were unrestrained,  the greater percentages of unrestrained fatalities occurred in larger vehicles, with the complete results as follows: SUVs (55%), pick-ups (43%), vans (40%), and cars (24%). Additionally, one third of children under the age of 13 who died in car accidents fell into the unrestrained category.

While it remains unclear whether or not the children were restrained, the news report did state that at least some of the passengers were ejected, suggesting that they were either incorrectly restrained, or not restrained at all. Failure to restraint children properly, and attempting to cross the median to avoid missing an exit are extremely dangerous behaviors, and proved to be tragic in this case.

If you have been injured, or a loved one has been killed in a car accident caused by another person’s negligent conduct, contact an experienced Atlanta car accident attorney as soon as possible. Stephen M. Ozcomert is an Atlanta area personal injury attorney with over 20 years of experience. He understands the evidentiary challenges presented in complex car accidents, and is skilled at representing individuals and families who have been injured  due to the negligent or reckless driving by others. We treat each client with care, and uphold the highest level of ethical representation. Contact us today to schedule your free initial consultation. You can reach us by calling (404) 370-1000 or through our website.

More Blog Posts:

Police Continue Investigation Into Fatal SW Atlanta Car Accident, Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published September 20, 2013

Cobb County Car Accident Could See Wrongful Death Suit in Addition to Criminal Charge, Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published September 13, 2013

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