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Auto Accidents in the News: Three Children Die After a Car Crash in Augusta, GA

On June 1 of this year, three children died after a car crash at the intersection of Riverwatch Parkway and Stevens Creek Road in Augusta. John Powell, age 8, died first when a white Dodge pick-up truck collided with the Toyota Corolla in which he was riding. The accident occurred at approximately 5:15 in the afternoon, disrupting rush-hour traffic. All three children were wearing seatbelts and sitting in the back seats of the cars. The other children were injured in the crash and later died in the hospital. The second child, Quamaine Jones, age 9, passed away a few hours after the accident at the Children’s Hospital of Georgia. The third victim of the crash, Eric Jamal Simon-Smalls, age 9, died the Friday after the accident at Georgia Regents Children’s Medical Center. The cause of death was identified as multiple blunt force traumas.

The driver has been identified as Christopher Whitehead. Whitehead was driving his Dodge Ram eastbound on Riverwatch Parkway when the driver of the other vehicle, Wade Jackson, was trying to turn left onto Stevens Creek Road. Witnesses told the investigators that drivers of both vehicles went through a red light in the seconds prior to the accident. The accident report does not assign fault at this time, but the investigation is still pending. The Richmond County Sheriff’s office says that in their investigation, they are focusing on traffic patterns (i.e. timing of the changing of traffic light colors, and when turn arrows come on). The intersection of Riverwatch Parkway and Stevens Creek Road has frequently seen accidents during the past three years. So far in 2015, there have been eight accidents, and 20 last year.

Eric Kennedy was driving when he saw the accident. Since emergency crews had yet to arrive at the scene, he tried to help. He parked his car and ran over to the Toyota Corolla. “I heard this guy just scream really loud so I ran over to the car. That’s when I saw everything with the kids…One lady used her thumb to try to intubate the child just to try to get some air in him.” The scene of this accident is one that Kennedy will never forget. “I wish that I could’ve at least opened… just do something instead of standing there and wait. And I just feel so sad for that family…I couldn’t be me any longer if that happened to me.”

The community is currently mourning the three victims of this accident. The Principal of the children’s elementary school, Aletha Snowberger, said that all the emotion is “very raw. These kids are our kids and we take care of them every day from 8:00 to 3:00 every afternoon and they are like our children.”

Goldstein Hayes & Lina, LLC

The Atlanta car accident attorneys at Goldstein Hayes & Lina, LLC have seen too many tragic auto accident cases that should and could have been prevented. Our firm extends our deepest condolences to the victims families.

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