A baby was killed and three other people were hurt when a suspected impaired motorist pulled in front of a semi truck on I-12 in St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana, on Wednesday.
The crash happened at 3:25 p.m. in the eastbound lanes of I-12 near U.S. 190, according to a news release from the Louisiana State Police (LSP).
Police say that the incident began when a motorist missed his exit:
“…the crash occurred as 62-year-old Hammond resident Erroll Nugent was driving a 2001 Ford Taurus eastbound on Interstate 12. After missing his exit to US 190 south, Nugent pulled into the center median of Interstate 12. As Nugent attempted to re-enter Interstate 12, he pulled into the path of a 2006 Peterbilt tractor-trailer, which had been traveling eastbound in the left lane. The tractor-trailer was driven by Reymundo Nunez of Mission, TX. The front of the tractor-trailer crashed into the rear of the Taurus. Following the collision, both vehicles traveled into the center median.”
One month old Bryce Martin was not properly restrained and suffered severe injuries. He was airlifted to the hospital, where he later passed away.
Nugent and two others inside the car suffered moderate injuries. Nunez was not seriously injured in the crash.
Though a breath test came back negative for Nugent, troopers believed that he was impaired and collected a blood sample. The results of the blood test are pending.
When Nugent is released from the hospital, LSP says that he will be arrested and booked on charges including Vehicular Homicide, Vehicular Negligent Injuring, Child Restraint, Careless Operation, and Suspended Driver’s License. The investigation is still ongoing and more charges could follow.
LSP urged drivers to learn from the sad incident and to make smart decisions behind the wheel: “The tragic outcome in yesterday’s crash is compounded by the fact that it was completely preventable. Poor/criminal decisions led to the loss of a one month old child. Impairment, distractions and lack of restraint continue to be contributing factors in crashes daily. Please, speak to your loved ones about the importance of safe decisions behind the wheel. Remind them to never drive impaired, always wear a seatbelt and avoid distractions. The conversation could be the difference in the event of a crash.“