A driver who fell asleep in his truck in the middle of the road caused a major traffic accident in Atlanta, when he suddenly woke up and accelerated into several vehicles in an attempt to flee the scene.
The man was apparently initially discovered by the camera crews of a local news station, prompting the employees of the news station to call 911, as the truck was stopped in a lane of traffic, with the engine still running, as the man lay asleep behind the wheel.
A Georgia Department of Transportation HERO unit arrived and tried to revive the man and remove the keys from the ignition. The driver awoke, engaged in some sort of confrontation with the HERO worker and sped off, nearly hitting the HERO worker, and colliding into two other cars. This caused a chain reaction that eventually resulted in a five car accident. The incident reportedly occurred at the Buford Connector near downtown Atlanta.
The HERO worker was finally able to get the keys out of the man’s truck, prompting the driver to attempt to flee on foot, reportedly jumping over a barbed wire fence. The police have reportedly been unable to track the man down. Fortunately, no one was seriously injured as a result of the incident.
This case, like most accidents, is one that could have easily been avoided. It remains unclear what the man must have been thinking when he not only fought the HERO worker, but then instead of pulling his vehicle over, instead accelerated into traffic, causing a collision.
People understandably become tired; it is human nature to need a certain amount of sleep. However, what is not acceptable is resisting the urge to rest, and failing to pull to the side of the road when we start to notice the signs of fatigue taking over.
So-called “drowsy driving” is so prevalent, in fact, that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration joined together with several other organizations to conduct a study into the problem, and investigate potential solutions. Among the findings of the study:
“NHTSA data indicate that in recent years there have been about 56,000 crashes annually in which driver drowsiness/fatigue was cited by police. Annual averages of roughly 40,000 nonfatal injuries and 1,550 fatalities result from these crashes.”
And these statistics are believed to be underreported, meaning an even greater number of collisions may be a result of a drowsy driver behind the wheel.
Drivers are required to drive in a way which does not create an unnecessary or undue risk for pedestrians and others driving on the road. When a driver engages in a behavior that puts others at risk, he or she should be held accountable for any damages, including personal injury, which they cause. In this case, once apprehended, the man responsible for causing the massive accident could potentially face both criminal and civil lawsuits arising out of his questionable decisionmaking.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a car accident due to another individual’s negligent driving, consult an experienced Atlanta car accident attorney as soon as possible. Stephen Ozcomert is a knowledgeable personal injury attorney with over 20 years of experience, and is skilled at representing individuals and their families who have been injured as a result of the negligent or reckless driving of others in Atlanta and throughout Georgia. We will handle your case with the utmost care, and pride ourselves in following the highest ethical standards of representation. Call us today at (404)-370-1000 in order to schedule your free initial consultation, or you can reach us through our website.
More Blog Posts:
Road Rage Suspected in Deadly Gainesville Crash, Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published October 9, 2013
Multiple Fatalities in Church Bus Collision, including Atlanta Truck Driver, Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published October 2, 2013