41-year-old Jessica Renee Smith, of Sautee Nacoochee, was reportedly killed in a fatal I-85 accident involving an SUV and tractor trailer on Monday, October 6, 2014.
WTVM News reports Ms. Smith was traveling as a passenger in a northbound PT Cruiser on I-85 in Auburn, shortly before 4:00pm Monday afternoon. The driver of the PT Cruiser apparently slowed to pass a stopped tractor trailer in the right lane when it was rear ended by a Toyota Highlander, forcing the PT Cruiser under the the tractor trailer. Ms. Smith perished at the scene, per media reports. The PT Cruiser driver was reportedly airlifted to a trauma hospital with injuries.
Witnesses report the tractor trailer was stopped due to an earlier accident at the Exit 51 ramp. Police are still investigating the cause of the initial rear end collision and have not announced whether the driver of the Highlander will face charges.
Our Legal News
The Murray Law Firm is following the accident closely and questioning what factors, such as distraction or speed, may have lead to this tragedy.
Why did the Highlander driver fail to stop or slow for slowing traffic as it approached the oncoming accident? Do cellphone records and traffic surveillance indicate whether the driver was engaged in distractive devices?
Did excessive speed or impairment contribute to the driver’s inability to slow or stop for the PT Cruiser in time?
Should the driver of the Highlander be found at fault for distracted or negligent driving, the family of Ms. Smith may elect to file civil claims for her wrongful death. The driver of the PT Cruiser may also elect to hold the driver civilly liable for his injuries. Claims of this magnitude will send a much-needed message to all Georgia drivers on the perils of distracted driving.
Photographs and a thorough inspection of all involved vehicles will need to be performed immediately before any evidence may be damaged or destroyed. The injured victim and the Smith family should retain an experienced personal injury firm without delay to ensure all evidence is preserved and their best interests are protected.
The Murray Law Firm has extensive experience in protecting victims of distracted, impaired and negligent drivers and we offer our legal expertise, if needed. Anyone seeking further information or legal representation is encouraged to contact us at 706.494.2800. Consultations are free and confidential.