POSTED: Sunday, September 1, 2013 - 7:00pm
UPDATED: Sunday, September 1, 2013 - 7:04pm
ASCENSION PARISH,LA (NBC33) — Saturday evening, shortly after 10:30pm, Troopers from Louisiana State Police Troop A began investigating a single vehicle fatal crash on Interstate 10 in Ascension Parish. The crash took place in the eastbound lanes of I-10 approximately two miles east of the LA 42 / Highland Road exit and resulted in the death of the unrestrained driver and moderate injuries for the unrestrained passenger.
Troopers' investigation revealed that the crash occurred as a 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee, driven by Taslein Whitney,36, was traveling eastbound on Interstate 10. As the Jeep SUV continued eastbound, its left side tires drifted off road to the left resulting in Whitney steering the vehicle sharply to the right. Upon being overcorrected to the right, the Jeep crossed both eastbound lanes and ran off road to the right impacting a guard rail end at the LA 928 / Bluff Road overpass. After the initial impact, the vehicle continued up an embankment and struck a concrete girder on the underside of the overpass.
Whitney was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected from the vehicle during the course of the crash sustaining fatal injuries. Front seat passenger in the Jeep, Bobby Joe Beckham,34 of Baton Rouge, LA, was also not properly restrained and received moderate injuries in the crash. Alcohol use is unknown at this time with a toxicology analysis to be performed at the Louisiana State Police Crime Lab.
As part of "Operation Safe Corridor", Troopers and local law enforcement agencies continue to increase patrols and enforcement throughout the Labor Day weekend in an effort to save lives. No matter their efforts, the task of keeping our roadways safe is a joint responsibility requiring the public to use good judgment and make the right decision both before driving and while behind the wheel. Making the right choice such as not driving while impaired and always being properly restrained can often mean the difference between life and death.