On Thursday morning, texting while driving almost became a deadly mistake for one Dalton teenager. 19 year old Luis Hernandez of 909 Croy Street told a Dalton officer that he was texting and driving just before his car was hit by a passing train on McFarland Avenue. Amazingly, Hernandez walked away from the wreck with only minor bumps and bruises.
According to witness statements shortly before 8:10 AM, Hernandez's silver Honda Accord was traveling eastbound on McFarland Avenue when he crossed the railroad tracks. The gates were down and the lights were activated as two trains were approaching. Hernandez managed to miss the southbound train but his car was hit in the back quarter panel by the northbound train and his car was dragged a short distance.
Hernandez was transported to Hamilton Medical Center to be checked out, but he didn't complain of any injuries at the scene. He was treated and released from the hospital. He was cited by the Dalton Police Department with texting & driving, disregarding a railroad crossing, and window tint violation.
All things considered, today was this driver's lucky day because this crash could very easily have been deadly if the car had been struck by the train even a tenth of a second sooner. No matter what message you're sending or receiving, it can wait. PLEASE pull over before sending or reading texts or emails. It can wait.
Pictures of the wreck are below. You can also scroll further down to watch a short video produced by the DPD reminding you NEVER to drive while distracted. It's not just texting; any form of distraction while driving can lead to a serious crash.