A 17-year-old Choctawhatchee High School junior is facing charges in relation to Wednesday’s car accident that critically injured a 58-year-old Fort Walton Beach man, who died from those injuries this morning, reports say. According to police, alcohol was not a factor in the fatal pedestrian accident.
The ultimately fatal car accident occurred around 6:45 a.m. Wednesday morning. The teen driver was headed south on Fairview Drive in Pensacola in a 1995 Ford Thunderbird. The 58-year-old man was walking in the roadway for unknown reasons, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
The pedestrian was struck by the right-front end of the Thunderbird. The victim was taken via GULFlight to Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola in critical condition, but he succumbed to his injuries this morning.
Early press coverage of the pedestrian accident quoted Okaloosa County Sheriff’s deputy J.D. Burnham, one of the first on the scene, who reported his belief that the Fort Walton Beach man had been in the roadway because he was chasing a dog. However, Corporal Stephen Fisher of the FHP stated that the theory was likely inaccurate, and the FHP is still investigating why the man was walking in the middle of the road.
The cause of the car accident is still under investigation, as well. The 17-year-old driver, also from Fort Walton Beach, was not drinking at the time of the accident. He was wearing his seatbelt, and he was apparently not injured in the crash.
Media reports did not specify what charges the teen driver faces in connection with the man’s wrongful death.
A fatal car accident is always a tragedy for all those involved. Whether the deceased was chasing a lost dog or not, pedestrians can appear in the roadway at any time, and all drivers need to be alert for them, especially in residential areas. Please drive safely.
Source: Northwest Florida Daily News, “Pedestrian dies of injuries sustained in Wednesday wreck,” Angel McCurdy, April 15, 2011