A fatal trucking accident ended in death for a young man trying to get home for Christmas. A 28 year-old motivational speaker from New Jersey was killed on his way home for Christmas when a tractor-trailer crashed into his car on I-95. The accident occurred around 12:30 a.m. Thursday on December 22. Hezekiah Griggs III was parked with his emergency flashers on in the safety zone on I-95 at Old St Augustine Road when a tractor-trailer hit the back of Hezekiah Griggs vehicle. According to the Florida Highway Patrol the tractor- trailer driver from Jacksonville was attempting to merge onto the Interstate when his truck struck the parked Mercedes driven by Hezekiah Griggs. Griggs planned to catch a flight from Orlando to return home in time for Christmas. Hezekiah Griggs died at the scene. A somber Christmas fell over the celebration planned for the family and friends of Hezekiah Griggs after this tragic accident.
Jacksonville was the scene of a fatal accident claiming the life of two passengers in an SUV on I-295. According to the Florida Highway Patrol a Toyota Sequoia with a U-Haul attached traveling North on I-295 was struck by a Ford sedan. Korey Short, 21 was driving a Ford 500 Hundred sedan when he left the roadway and struck the concrete median, he then reentered the road and struck the U-Haul that was being transported by the SUV. The impact on the U-Haul caused the SUV to flip over ejecting a man and a woman. The ejected passengers Quillerman Cruz, 42 and a 39 year-old man were killed. The driver of the SUV was not injured three other passengers were transported to the hospital with minor injuries. All of the occupants were from out of town. Holidays bring extra travelers to our roadways along with the added traffic of local shoppers and holiday parties accidents increase. Please drive with extra caution and buckle up.
A sad day for Jacksonville after a second teen death on our roadways yesterday both teens were attended high school in the Arlington area. Derek George a 16 year old Atlantic Coast High School student suffered fatal injuries in an auto accident after his car slid off the road and struck a tree. Derek George was leaving school Thursday night after his junior varsity game when he crashed on R.G. Skinner Parkway near Baymeadows Road. Derek George was traveling North on Skinner parkway just after 8 p.m. when his Nissan left the road and hit a tree his two passengers were taken to the hospital with serious injuries. Derek George died at the scene. Teammates and friends have created a memorial at the scene leaving flowers, notes and even their own jerseys in memory of Derek George. Earlier in the day on Thursday another teen Denny Grahovic a Sandalwood student died from injuries sustained in an auto accident on Beach Blvd. In the wake of a second teen death in an auto accident in the same area of town the Duval County Public School issued a statement: "The communities of Sandalwood, Atlantic Coast High and all Duval County Public Schools are deeply saddened by the unexpected passing of its two students due to auto accidents. To support the well-being of students and faculty, specially-trained school counselors and social workers will be onsite today at both high schools, and will provide continued support as needed."
Sixteen year old Ruben Kelsey died in a fatal crash on Jacksonville's Arlington Rd. while the younger teens in the SUV with him were hospitalized with serious injuries around 4 a.m. on Sunday. The Honda Pilot was reported stolen from a Mandarin home prior to the crash. The driver was apparently driving at a high rate of speed when they lost control trying to navigate a turn onto Rogero Rd. The vehicle crossed the median and struck a concrete wall and a large utility pole. The impact caused serious damage to the vehicle ejecting the three teens from the SUV. Rueben Kelsey was pronounced dead at the scene the other 2 occupants were only 14 years old. The 14 year olds were reported to be in critical but stable condition. Jacksonville Sherriff's Office had some difficulty identifying the 14 year olds since they were not old enough to have a driver's license. If your teens have a phone make sure they have entered emergency health data and contact information on their phone. The Florida Department of Motor Vehicles issues Florida ID cards with photos for anyone over 5 years of age. Proof of residency and identification is required more information is available at this link. The Florida ID is also a good ID for seniors that no longer drive. http://www.dmv.org/fl-florida/id-cards.php
A fatal multi-vehicle auto accident transpired on J Turner Butler Blvd. in Jacksonville when a driver carelessly changed lanes according to witnesses. A Toyota Tundra pick-up truck driven by Kenneth Cruz swerved to avoid the vehicle changing lanes. The Toyota pick-up left the roadway and flipped over according to the Florida Highway Patrol. Preston Edwards, 26 years old died from injuries sustained in the accident. Cruz was transported to the hospital with minor injuries. A second passenger in the truck was not injured. The lane changing driver continued on their way without stopping. If you are involved in an auto accident prompt action is required, especially when medical attention is needed.