Earlier this month a woman died in a single-vehicle accident in northeast Forsyth, marking the 22nd traffic fatality in Forsyth County in 2012. According to Sheriff's Sergeant Chris Shelton, that number has continued to rise over the past several years.
Shelton says there were 17 fatalities in 2011 and 12 fatalities in 2010. He also says that most of those accidents did not involve speeding on Georgia 400. Shelton said there was only one fatality in 2012 on the GA 400 in Forsyth; there were three in 2011, and none in 2010.
Shelton said that everybody talks about the problems with GA 400; however, most of the time we only have minor crashes there. "Most of your fatalities are due to high speeds on low-speed rural roads."
The woman who died earlier this month was not wearing her seat belt when she was thrown from her 2005 Nissan Maxima after the vehicle veered off the road and collided into a tree.
According to Shelton, among the most dangerous roads in the area is Hwy. 53, which is also known as Dawsonville Highway; Shelton noted that on Hwy 53., four motorists have died "all within a mile of each other."
Shelton said that the contributing factors in fatal wrecks include: alcohol, drugs, high speeds, and not paying attention. Shelton said, "With cell phones, GPSs, laptops and iPads and everything else they've got going on in the car, we've seen an increase in that – the distracted driver." Shelton went on to note the Governor's Office of Highway Safety is focusing heavily on distracted drivers.
Shelton said that with Christmas and the New Year approaching quickly, sheriff's deputies would be focusing on traffic campaigns starting mid-December. Shelton said the campaign will run till after the first week in January, and this is the time when they do heavy DUI enforcement, seatbelt use, and distracted driver road checks.
Distracted driving has become a large national concern, especially with the advanced use of cellular phones and other electronic devices. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in 2010 alone, more than 3,000 people were killed in distracted driving crashes. Distracted driving refers to anything that takes the driver's eyes, hands, or mind off the task of driving and this can include texting while driving, cellular phone use, eating, reading, or even handling children in the rear of the vehicle.
If you have been injured in a distracted driving accident or due to another form of driver negligence, please contact an Alpharetta personal injury lawyer from The Williamson Law Firm today.