Man hospitalized after driving into Carrabba's sign



A man was hospitalized Tuesday after his car struck a large sign in front of Carrabba’s Italian Grill on Washington Road.

About 5:15 p.m., the man, who had not been identified by authorities late Tuesday, was driving westbound on Washington Road when he lost control of his Lincoln Town Car, Richmond County sheriff’s Lt. Lewis Blanchard said. No one else was injured by the accident.

Emergency rescue crews toiled for almost two hours to remove the man from the wreckage, folding the roof of the car back to gain access. Georgia Power was called to cut power to the sign while the crews worked, Blanchard said.

Eastbound and westbound lanes of Washington Road were slowed as crews worked to clear the scene.

“We still don’t know what caused it. We don’t know if it’s medical or something else yet,” Blanchard said.

The man, who Blanchard described as “conscious and alert,” was taken to Georgia Regents Medical Center for treatment. His condition is unknown.

Brandy Douglas, who witnessed the accident as she drove in the eastbound lane on Washington Road, said the car narrowly missed a pedestrian before crashing into the sign.

“I almost didn’t see the guy coming straight at me,” she said. “They’ve had to use every possible tool to get that guy out of there. (The car) was completely crushed between the sign and a tree.”

Jill Cole said the man was suffering from a seizure when she approached the vehicle to help the man. She estimates that more than 20 people flocked from nearby restaurants to help remove the victim.

“I still don’t know how he didn’t hit anyone,” Cole said.

Douglas and Cole said the man was talking to rescue workers while they attempted to remove him.

“I’m just glad he’s alive,” Douglas said.



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