Fatal Motorcycle Crash

Our Atlanta motorcycle accident attorneys know that motorcycle accidents are too often fatal. A recent news article discussed another fatal accident involving a motorcycle in Georgia involving someone fleeing the police, and another about a drunk driver who killed a motorcycle passenger.

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On a Saturday night around 10:25 p.m. at the end of June, 28-year-old Michael William Lynch from Cartersville was trying to flee a Bartow County deputy. The deputy had tried to stop him for speeding. The deputy lost sight of Mr. Lynch on GA 293. He went around a sharp turn on that road, and saw debris from a crash. He turned around and found the motorcycle and Mr. Lynch off the shoulder of the road. The motorcycle had gone onto the shoulder, down the embankment and had smashed into several trees. Mr. Lynch had been ejected from the motorcycle and died from his injuries in the crash, and was pronounced dead at the scene. Bartow County Coroner Joel Guyton said, “He struck a tree. He died as a result of multiple blunt force trauma from the single-motorcycle accident.” The Georgia State Patrol said they were not involved in chasing Mr. Lynch, but did release a press release about the accident.

In the above case, the motorcyclist was trying to avoid police and was driving recklessly, but a lot to times, people on motorcycles are the victims of accidents as well, and are much more vulnerable than people in cars and other vehicles. A drunk driver killed a motorcycle passenger the same weekend in the end of June. Jessica Johnson was driving her 2012 Hyundai Sonata southbound on I-75/85, tried to merge onto I-20, and rear ended a 2013 Suzuki GSX driven by Saahir Salahuddin. His passenger, 33-year-old Ellie Norris, was knocked off the bike, and then run over by Ms. Johnson’s car. The motorcycle hit the median. Mr. Salahuddin survived, went over to where Ms. Norris was pinned down on the pavement by the car, called her name and then ran away from the scene when she didn’t answer. When police tested Ms. Johnson, she was at more than twice the legal limit for alcohol blood levels while driving. She was arrested and taken to Fulton County Jail for DUI, first degree vehicular homicide, reckless driving and following too closely. Mr. Salahuddin went to Grady Memorial Hospital to treat his injuries, and he was also arrested for first degree vehicular homicide, hit-and-run and theft by receiving a stolen auto, but it was unclear whether all the charges were related to the accident.

Atlanta Motorcycle Accident Lawyers

If you or a loved one has been injured in a vehicle accident, on a motorcycle or any other type of vehicle, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer. The Law Office of Sammons & Carpenter may be able to help you understand your case and how to move forward with any legal avenues, so contact us as soon as possible at 404-814-8948, or fill out our confidential online case evaluation form for a free consultation today.

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Our Atlanta car accident attorneys see news stories about fatal car accidents too frequently, and also hear from clients’ personal stories of damaging and even fatal car accidents. Last week in Georgia, another such story came up.

12133851256_1a298ca3f4Last Friday there was an accident in Dade County. Just before 8 a.m., a black Ford Mustang, driven by Audrey Bruneo, a 52-year-old from Wisconsin, was going westbound on 1-24 when it crossed the median and went into the eastbound lanes, t-boning a Chevrolet Trailblazer, then crashing into a Nissan Altima, and then clipping a Jeep Patriot, which overturned on impact. Ms. Bruneo died from the impact of the accident due to injuries sustained in the crash. The Nissan Altima was driven by Brooke Cole, a 43-year-old from Alabama, who also died from injuries sustained in the crash. The other drivers, 50-year-old Belinda Griffith, and 50-year-old Sandra Kay Chitwood, both survived the accident. They were taken to hospitals nearby for examination and treatment.

The accident happened hear the Georgia 299 exit on I-24 in Wildwood, which is southwest of Chattanooga, and near the junction with I-59, which is a heavy commuter route from northeast Alabama. The accident backed up traffic during the morning commute on both these roads.

Georgia State Patrol’s Sergeant Tommy Sturdivan told reporters that Ms. Bruneo had a cellphone in her hand when she died, but that they were still determining the exact cause of the accident. He said, “The speed limit through there is, as we all know, 70 mph before we get into Tennessee so I would expect interstate speeds for the impact.” Dylcia Martinez witnessed the accident from her car with her young niece and nephew. She said, “Just saw fumes and parts of the car flying away and that’s when I came to the side. It’s very scary to think that we had plans and this family had plans too. It’s scary. You never know what can happen on the road.” Sgt. Sturdivan said the Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team is still investigating.

Unfortunately that wasn’t even the only accident on I-59 that day. A car rear-ended an 18-wheel tractor trailer near the exit for New England, Georgia, and a helicopter had to come to evacuate a victim of that accident.

Atlanta Car Accident Lawyers

If you or a loved one has been involved in a car or other type of vehicle accident, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer. These accidents can devastate families, and often a reckless or negligent driver is to blame. Roads can be dangerous places if drivers don’t follow the rules of the road, and two deaths and two accidents on the same day in the same area show how unfortunately common these crashes are. To discuss any steps to move forward with legal options, contact the Law Office of Sammons & Carpenter as soon as possible at 404-814-8948, or fill out our confidential online case evaluation form for a free consultation today.

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Our Atlanta car accident attorneys read about a tragic car accident in which five people died, including three children. The accident happened around 10:45 a.m. in Hall County on a Monday morning. A Ford Explorer was driving on Athens Highway near Oak Grove Road and left its lane, crossing the concrete median and going into the oncoming lane. At that time, a tractor trailer travelling in the opposite direction smashed into the Explorer head on. Four people in the Explorer died at the scene, members of two families that had been friends and neighbors for decades, including the 34-year-old driver Amanda Lynn Pardue, and a 53-year-old passenger, Robbie Hollis. Also among the tragic deaths were an eight-year-old girl, Kaleigh Emfinger, the daughter of Ms. Pardue, and a 13-year-old, Dalton Martin, Mr. Hollis’s grandson. A two-year-old, who was riding in a booster seat, was still alive when rescue workers got there, and he was taken to Northeast Georgia Medical Center. But the child, Elli Emfinger, also Ms. Pardue’s child, died at the hospital from his injuries later that night.  He would have turned three this month.

Ford Explorer

A six-year-old boy, Ethan Emfinger, another son of Ms. Pardue, was also supposed to be in the car, but asked to stay home that day. The family told reporters they are grateful that this little boy is still alive. The Hollises had been friends with Ms. Pardue and her family, and were almost as connected as family, spending time at each others houses and looking after each others children.

The driver of the tractor trailer was also taken to Northeast Georgia Medical Center and was in stable condition.

The Hall County Sheriff’s Department, Hall County Fire Services, and Georgia State Patrol are investigating the accident. Police are unsure why the families were on the road, although they suspect it was to run errands. Family member Brandy Poole told reporters her uncle called and told her about the crash and said, “We don’t know yet. We’re still in shock as far as the why.”No autopsy was done on any of the victims of the accident. Blood work was sent to the lab by the GBI, but it takes about 8-12 weeks to get a report.

Ms. Pardue’s fiancé told reporters he suspects that she had a seizure while driving, which was the cause of the accident. Craig Emfinger said, “She wasn’t supposed to be driving anyway because of epilepsy.” Ms. Poole added, “She’d had epilepsy for about eight months. There always had to be someone with her when she was driving. Her doctor felt like they had it under control.”

Atlanta Car Accident Lawyers

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer. To discuss any steps to move forward with legal options in your case, contact the Law Office of Sammons & Carpenter as soon as possible at 404-814-8948, or fill out our confidential online case evaluation form for a free consultation today.

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Fatal Tractor Trailer Accident

Our Atlanta tractor trailer accident attorneys read about a fatal tractor trailer accident that happened in Barrow County. Earlier this month, a Dodge 3500 with a trailer was driving westbound on Georgia 316 near Patrick Mill Road. The driver, 44-year-old Richard Shane Moore, stopped because he couldn’t pass a lawn mower that was in the middle of the road between lanes. Following the Dodge 3500 was a 1989 Dodge Ram 50 pickup truck. The pickup truck, driven by 29-year-old Cody Grayson Brantley, slowed down to stop for the Dodge 3500, but a tractor trailer slammed into the back of the pick up, causing the pickup to crash into the Dodge 3500 right in front of it in a chain reaction crash. The tractor trailer overturned, as did the trailer the Dodge 3500 was pulling, and Mr. Brantley was killed in the accident.  Mr. Moore was taken to Athens Regional Medical Center, and no information was released on his condition. Photographs show how the Dodge Ram pick up truck was flattened, and the tractor trailer had careened into a guard rail, bending it.

Dodge Logo

The driver of the tractor trailer was Roger Bly, a 40-year-old man from Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Police arrested him and he was booked into Barrow County jail. He has now been charged with second degree homicide by a vehicle and following too closely. Both are misdemeanor crimes.

The fatal crash backed up traffic in both directions for almost ten hours as police and emergency personnel tried to deal with the tragic accident, and also the resulting diesel spill. While this was ongoing, a second crash happened in the eastbound lanes of 316, according to the Barrow County Sheriff’s Office.

Mr. Brantley owned a lawn care business, sang in his church choir, and had a wife, Amie, and a young daughter, Ayla Reese. A friend said, “Cody was a special guy— always had a smile on his face and something positive to say.”His sister-in-law, Amber Marquardt Drake, started a fund on GoFundMe.com hoping to raise $25,000 dollars for the little girl’s future education. She told reporters, “All donations will go to the fund and preserving Cody’s memory, so Ayla will know what a special man her daddy was!” By the Monday of the week following the tragic crash, it had already raised $16,000.

Atlanta Tractor Trailer Accident Attorneys

These kind of unnecessary tragedies happen all too often, and could be reduced if drivers, especially of large and powerful vehicles, took care to be responsible and safe on the road. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident with a tractor trailer or other large commercial vehicle, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer. To discuss your case and any steps to move forward with legal options to get any needed compensation, contact the Law Office of Sammons & Carpenter as soon as possible at 404-814-8948, or fill out our confidential online case evaluation form for a free consultation today.

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Car Crashes into CNN Building

Our Atlanta car accident lawyers read a strange story from last Friday the 13th, which was also a full moon.  A driver who was high on marijuana, 22-year-old Gerlmy Javon Todd, drove his Mercedes-Benz convertible with Florida plates into the CNN Center in downtown Atlanta. Fortunately no one was injured in this crash, but it caused significant property damage.

CNN Logo

Mr. Todd smashed into the CNN Center at the corner of Marietta St. and Centennial Olympic Park Drive at around 4 a.m., according to Atlanta Police Department spokesman John Chafee. The car smashed the 10-foot-high plate glass window, which has been cordoned off with yellow tape, and came to a rest in the lobby. Mr. Todd had been driving near the intersection and left the roadway and struck the building. The police had a hard time figuring out how he did this, as there are poles and planters, light posts, and metal barriers protecting trees and plants. There was no sign of damage on these barriers. Police could not answer how he ran into the building or even which way he was going at the time. Mr. Chafee just told reporters, “While I don’t have additional info at the moment I feel it is safe to say that the car was on the road at some point and then left it.”

At first Mr. Todd told police that he had fallen asleep at the wheel after driving all night. Both he and his passenger refused medical assistance. Mr. Chafee said police noticed the smell of marijuana in the car. Mr. Todd had marijuana on him when the police arrived at the scene of the crash. He then admitted to police that he smoked as he was driving, as well.

Mr. Todd was arrested on charges of driving under the influence, reckless driving and possession of marijuana. Officials say that Mr. Todd was being held at the Grady Memorial Hospital detention facility. His passenger, a woman, reportedly went to collect boxes, a duffle bag, several shoeboxes, and a flat screen television from the damaged Mercedes before it was towed away.

Atlanta Car Accident Attorneys

While no one was injured here, the accident could have easily been far worse. If a reckless or negligent driver has injured you or a family member, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer. To discuss your case and any steps to move forward with legal options to get any needed compensation, contact the Law Office of Sammons & Carpenter as soon as possible at 404-814-8948, or fill out our confidential online case evaluation form for a free consultation today.

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