A North Carolina man has been accused of causing a truck accident that left a 52-year-old police officer injured. The accident allegedly occurred when the suspect ran a red traffic light and collided with the officer, who was directing traffic near busy fairgrounds. According to the police report, the officer was thrown nearly 50 feet after being hit. He was then taken to a nearby medical center, where he remains in critical, but stable condition.
According to the police report, the truck's driver had a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.264 at the time of the crash, over three times the legal limit. Investigators have not yet been able to determine the speed at which the truck was traveling when it struck the officer, partially due to a lack of skid marks. Police also frequently determine speed at the time of impact by analyzing dents in the bodies of the vehicles involved, but it is unclear whether this has assisted investigators in this case.
Investigators also say that although the accident happened in an area monitored by cameras, they do not have any video footage of the crash occurring. They have cited the 911 recordings regarding the accident as evidence, but have declined to release them to the media.
Following the accident, the pickup truck driver was arrested and charged with serious injury by vehicle and driving under the influence of alcohol. He was taken to a county jail, where he remains to await trial. His bond was posted at $51,000.
This case shows the serious damage that negligent driving can cause, especially if the driver is operating a large vehicle. Hopefully this story and others like it will encourage other North Carolina drivers to operate their vehicles with caution.
Source: Des Moines Register, "Police report: Injured officer was thrown 47 feet in accident," Tom Alex, Aug. 23, 2011