Articles Posted in Motorcycle Accidents

Two Baton Rouge siblings were killed last week when their vehicle was struck by an oncoming train. Byron Henderson, 41, and Myra Henderson, 42, were driving their SUV westbound on Dorcy Road in White Castle, LA when it came to a complete stop while atop of the railroad tracks. The crossing is not outfitted with warning lights or crossing guards.

Union Pacific, the owners and operators of the train, allege that the train’s horn was blown continuously for  forty seconds prior to the collision. The Iberville Sheriff’s Office is still looking into why the vehicle was parked on the railroad tracks.  Investigators are hoping that footage from the train’s front-mounted cameras will shed more light on this event.

Union Pacific is cooperating with the Sheriff’s Office by conducting their own investigation into the events of that day.  While it is not currently know what speed the train was traveling at the time of impact, Union Pacific spokesperson Jeff DeGraff confirmed that their trains’ speed is limited to 60 mph in that area.

A two-car collision in Baton Rouge last Saturday resulted in the death of a Memphis man and an injured local preacher.

George Mabon and Reverend John Pitzer were passengers in a Mercedes when it was stuck at the intersection of South Acadian Thruway and North Boulevard.  Authorities believe that a southbound Nissan ran the red light and struck the back of the west-traveling Mercedes.  Pitzer suffered fractured ribs and was transported to a local hospital.  Mabon did not survive the crash.

The unidentified Nissan driver has yet to be charged, pending an ongoing investigation that involves accident reconstruction and the driver’s blood test. However, charges have already been filed on the driver of the Mercedes, John Baur of Memphis, after officers observed visible signs of intoxication at the time of the accident.  Responding officers reported that Baur’s eyes were red, his balance unsure, and his breath and person smelled of alcohol.  A field sobriety test was conducted and Baur’s blood-alcohol level registered 0.13 percent.  In Louisiana, a blood-alcohol content of 0.08 percent or higher is considered presumptive evidence of drunk driving.  Baur was booked on counts of first-offence DWI and reckless operation, with other possible charges pending. 

Duck Commander Inc., the company behind Duck Dynasty, and the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development have been named defendants in a lawsuit filed by Jennifer Young, the mother of Madison Welch.

Filed in St. Martin Parish, the suit maintains that Madison Welch’s accident was not simple user error, but rather the result of an 18-wheeler operated “by agents, employees and/or licensees of Duck Commander Inc.” cutting into Welch’s lane and forcing her off the road.  This allegation evidently arises from a phone conversation Welch was engaged with at the time of the incident.  The friend who was on the other end reported that Welch exclaimed something about a nearby truck and then the line went silent.  Shortly after being told by the friend of what occurred, Welch’s family was notified of the accident. Welch’s Toyota Tacoma left the road and flipped, ejecting her.  Welch later succumbed to her injuries and died.

Young’s case additionally relies on the testimony of William Kirksey, who claimed to have witnessed the entire event and was one of the first people on the scene.  Kirksey stated that two 18-wheelers were exiting the freeway at the same time as Welch.  Both were in line, but at one point, one of them swerved into Welch’s lane, apparently causing her to veer off the road.

A collision on the Lake Pontchartrain Bridge caused a 90-minute closure and left two women with moderate injuries last Friday.

Alvin Kimbrel of Belle Chasse was cited for careless driving after failing to recognize a vehicle as stalled in the right lane of the southbound side of the highway.  Kimbrel’s Ford F250 hit the other vehicle, a Dodge Ram containing driver, Alicia Lee, and passenger, Kala Perkins, at 65 miles per hour.  The force of impact pushed the Ram approximately 434 feet and caused it to catch fire, according to authorities.  The two women were aided in escaping the burning vehicle by a state trooper who was near the scene at the time.

According to reports, the Dodge Ram had experienced engine failure while on the Bridge and had coasted to a stop.  Despite having its emergency flashers activated, Kimbrel failed to recognize that the vehicle was stopped and thus did not take evasive action.  Kimbrel’s Ford flipped and landed on its wheels, blocking the remainder of the highway.

A two-vehicle crash involving four individuals occurred last Sunday in Crown Point.  Two were injured, one of whom, Susan Tiano, 71 of Lexington, Massachusetts, was later pronounced dead at University Medical Center in New Orleans, according to reports.

The incident occurred at the intersection of Bataria Boulevard and Leo Kerner Lafitte Parkway at 5 p.m. January 9, 2015.  According to the investigating officers, Tiano was a passenger in a 2015 Nissan Versa driven by Anton Becker, 75 of Newport, Massachusetts.  The Versa was driving southbound on Bataria, when, after turning left and disregarding a stop sign, it collided with a 2004 Nissan Titan driven by a Marrero man.

The two occupants of the Titan as well as Marrero were taken to a local hospital for minor injuries. Tiano, who suffered injuries significantly more severe was brought to University Medical Center by paramedics.

A three-vehicle crash on New Year’s Eve left one dead and others injured, according to Louisiana State Police.

Jocelyn Tennart, 45 of Zachary, was traveling eastbound on West Flanacher Road in East Baton Rouge Parish around 8 p.m. last Thursday.  Simultaneously, Marion Fuller, 71, was traveling south on U.S. 61.  Tennart was driving a Saturn car while Fuller was in a Chevrolet Silverado.

For reasons yet to be determined, Tennart failed to yield at the intersection of the two roads causing her to come into the path of the Silverado.  The impact occurred on the Saturn’s driver side and Tennart, who was not wearing a seat belt, was pronounced dead at the scene by the East Baton Rouge Coroner’s Office.

A Gonzales man is being charged with negligent homicide over the death of a Baton Rouge high school freshman last Wednesday.

On December 9, Brennan Rube, 14 years old of Prairieville, was bicycling on LA-73  when he was struck by a 2000 Dodge truck driven by Joshua Ashford, 26-years-old of Gonzales.  The force of impact flung Rube from his bicycle.  He was not wearing a helmet and died at the scene.  The crash happened around 6 p.m., according to Louisiana State Police.

Both vehicles were traveling in the same direction and Rube was struck by the front right side of Ashford’s truck.  According to the police report, Ashford was speeding on a road with a posted speed limit of 45 miles per hour.  Police do not suspect Ashford of being impaired at the time of the accident, however a routine toxicology test is pending.

A three-vehicle crash in Delcambre resulted the death of an uncle and nephew from Abbeville, according to police reports.

On November 26, 2015, Jones Mitchell and Gerald Mitchell were traveling west on Suzuki motorcycles on LA 14 and approaching an east-west crossover.  An 18-wheeler, driven by Earnest Comesana Jr.,  was traveling east on LA 14 and approaching the same crossover.   Comesana turned left into the crossover to begin traveling east and the Mitchells were unable to avoid colliding with Comesana’s trailer as it entered their lane of travel.

Although the Mitchell’s were wearing Department of Transportation-approved helmets, both received fatal injuries as a result of the collision and were pronounced dead at the scene by the Iberia Parish Coroner’s Office.  Comensana was properly restrained at the time of the crash and received no injuries.

Failure to obey a stop sign and suspected driving under the influence has lead to the death of a Ventress man last Friday.

Louisiana State Police has not completed its investigation, but according to initial findings, 27-year-old Nicholas Porche was driving westbound on Section Road in a white Sierra while Michael Holmes, 53-years-old of Ventress, was driving south on Beuche Road in a red F-150 around 5:30 on Friday, November 20.  The crash took place at the intersection of both roads near Erwinville.

According to officials, Porche ran the stop sign at the intersection of Beuche and Section, causing the accident.  Holmes was pronounced dead at the scene by the West Baton Rouge Coroner’s Office.  Porche was wearing his seat belt at the time and received minor injuries, but refused aid.

A drunk driver that caused an accident which lead to a man’s death was sentenced in Calcasieu Parish last Wednesday.

On September 27, 2014, Derek Paul Cooper was driving eastbound in the westbound lanes of I-10 in the Sulphur area.  He had a blood alcohol level of .24, three times the legal limit.  He collided with a car driven by Jeremy Olivier, age thirty-one, who died as a result.

At Cooper’s sentencing on Wednesday, Judge Ron Ware ordered Cooper to 18 years in prison, with three years suspended and credit for time served.  Judge Ware also ordered that the first five years of the sentence be served without benefit of probation, suspension, or parole.  Cooper will be on supervised parole for 2 years following his release.