Holiday car accidents claim lives of 3 teens, GSP stepping up patrols - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Holiday car accidents claim lives of 3 teens, GSP stepping up patrols

November 23, 2007

Americus -- Two Sylvester teens killed Monday afternoon are the second and third South Georgians killed in car crashes in the last 24 hours.

Thursday night, 13-year-old Jessie Alford of Schley County, was killed when a car overturned on New Era Road.

The 16-year-old driver of the car now faces charges.

Troopers say he violated Joshua's law, which requires 16 year olds to have their license six months before driving with non-family passengers.

With 18 fatalities predicted over Thanksgiving, Georgia State Troopers are working around the clock to prevent such crashes.

"Today we'll be out on patrol looking for speeders. Seatbelts, we'll check people as they go by to make sure they're buckled up," says Sgt. Jamie Sullivan, Georgia State Patrol.

Sgt. Sullivan knows their presence can make the difference in life and death.

He said, "All the men and women of the Georgia State Patrol will be out in full force this weekend in an attempt to slow people down and to make them buckle up."

Of the 8 people killed so far, three of them are from here in South Georgia.

One of the deaths happened Thanksgiving night on New Era Road in northern Sumter County. A 16-year-old flipped a car, a 13-year-old passenger was killed.

"It was involving two young people. It's a sad situation; one fatality and one injury. That is being investigated right now, but we just hope to prevent that from happening in the future and the rest of this holiday weekend," said Sullivan.

During the 102 hour holiday traffic period, The Georgia State Patrol has predicted 3,285 traffic crashes, 1,299 injuries and 18 deaths.

With alcohol sales up this time of year, troopers say you'd better think twice before drinking and driving.

"We'll have road blocks and sobriety check points, checking for DUI or impaired drivers," said Sullivan.

Impaired drivers who are often the cause of deadly crashes on Georgia highways.

The Thanksgiving travel period ends at midnight Sunday night.

Feedback: news@walb.com?subject=GSPholiday/CF

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