Just last week Gail Buchanan suffered injuries from a car crash involving an 18-wheeler, according to Barrow County News. As Buchanan was driving on Route 211, she turned left onto Barrow Park Drive when an 18-wheeler crashed into her car.
Buchanan is an employee of Barrow County Magistrate Court. She was close to other magistrate court employees who were stopped and waiting to turn left onto Barrow Park Drive to get to the courthouse. The driver of the tractor-trailer, Roy Emrick, 57 years old from Loganville, was driving north on Route 211 when he saw several cars waiting to turn onto Barrow Park Drive.
He could not stop in time because “the truck bed was loaded and because of the downhill grade.” Emrick saw that the southbound land appeared clear and he swerved into it to avoid the waiting cars. When he did this, Buchanan turned left toward Barrow Park Drive and Emrick’s truck collided with her driver’s side of her Chrysler Seabring. Buchanan’s car was thrown into the guard rail.
Gordy Wright, the spokesman for the Georgia Highway Patrol said that Emrick has been charged with following too closely and he did not suffer any injuries. Buchanan was taken to Gwinnett Medical Center for her injuries. Emergency personnel had to cut Buchanan’s car to remove her out of the car.
This intersection has been the accident site for seven crashes in the last 14 months reports Barrow County News. However, state workers have installed a new sign on Route 211 northbound just last week in order to warn drivers about this intersection. Buchanan is actually the second county employee who has been involved in a car collision here in the past two weeks. A Chevrolet K2500HD pickup truck crashed into the back of a county pickup truck on July 29th. The truck was making a left turn onto Barrow Park Drive from Route 211. There were no serious injuries but the car crash was similar to the car wreck with Buchanan. Actually, in all the past car crashes occurring in this intersection, one car was stopped waiting to turn left and another was driving northbound down the hill and did not stop in time.
Officials state they have have addressed this issue. In 2007, County officials declined to include a left turn lane on Route 211 after plans were drafted for an extension of the Barrow Park Drive. This is when DOT did not require a lane at the time. Officials declined because:
“the county would have had to purchase additional frontage land and secure rights-of-
way along the road, and because of the wetlands next to the road, might have had to
pay more in wetlands impact mitigation. That could have the extended the time of
project and drove up the cost of extension.”
On July 24, 2007, the Board of Commissioners approved the original bid for the Barrow Park Drive extension from Merritt Contracting, Inc., for $1.25 million. Now there is a right turn lane for traffic heading south on Route 211 that would lead to turning onto Barrow Park Drive. There is still construction regarding the stretch of the road that will be completed soon.
Hopefully, after the construction, car crashes will not occur in this intersection as frequently or at all. With so many occurring in the same area and the same way, it should be a hint that something needs to be done.
If you or a loved one have been seriously injured in a trucking accident or drunk driving accident, you may want to contact us to see how we can help adequately protect your legal interests. We work tirelessly for our clients to not only maximize their claim, but to also help them put their lives back together.