Bogalusa residents, children injured in afternoon wreck

Published 10:20 pm Saturday, July 13, 2013

A four vehicle crash Saturday afternoon on Louisiana Highway 21 resulted in minor to moderate injuries to four occupants and left two young children in serious condition. The crash occurred shortly before 3 p.m. this afternoon on La. 21 at its intersection with La. 40 in St. Tammany Parish.

Troopers’ preliminary investigation revealed the crash occurred as several vehicles slowed to a stop in the northbound lane of La. 21 while waiting for a vehicle to turn left onto La. 40. As the vehicles remained stopped in the roadway, a 2012 Volvo 18-wheeler failed to stop in time and impacted the rear of a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder, pushing it forward into the next stopped vehicle, a 2007 Honda CRV. After the initial impact, the Volvo 18-wheeler continued in a northerly direction, impacting the rear of a fourth stopped vehicle, a 2009 Hyundai Santa Fe.

The driver of the Hyundai, 32-year-old Kylandis Jackson of Bogalusa, received no injuries in the crash.

36-year-old Trenice Harry of Bogalusa, the driver of the Honda CRV, sustained minor injuries in the crash and was transported to LSU Medical Center in Bogalusa.

The driver of the Nissan Pathfinder, 26-year-old Tarrah Willis, and front seat passenger, 27-year-old Bruce Willis both of Bogalusa, were treated for minor injuries at St. Tammany Parish Hospital. At the time of the crash, the rear seat of the Nissan was occupied by three juvenile passengers. Two of the three children, a 2-year-old male and a 1-year-old male, were airlifted with serious injuries to the Interim LSU Public Hospital in New Orleans. The third child passenger, an 8-year-old female, was transported to St. Tammany Parish Hospital with minor to moderate injuries.

The driver of the Volvo 18-wheeler, 61-year-old Earl Johnson of Meraux, was not injured in the crash. He submitted to a breath alcohol test showing no detectable signs of alcohol in his system. Johnson was cited for careless operation of a motor vehicle and having an expired license plate.

All drivers and occupants in each of the four vehicles were wearing seat belts at the time of the crash, including the child passengers, who were properly restrained in child safety seats.

While the cause of the crash remains under investigation, troopers urge the public to remain vigilant while driving, never drive while fatigued or impaired, and avoid distracting activities, especially the temptations of electronic devices that can substantially divert a driver’s attention away from the road.

To report distracted drivers or other hazardous road conditions, motorists can dial *LSP (*577) from your cellular phone to reach the State Police office closest to you.