Originally created 07/25/99

I-20 wreck claims infant's life

A 5-month-old infant was killed and three adults injured when their vehicle careened off Interstate 20 on Saturday afternoon in Aiken County.

The white Ford pickup landed on its side in bushes along I-20. Witnesses said a vehicle they were towing appeared to weave and cause the driver to lose control.

Cartersville, Ga., resident Carl Brown Jr., 25, was driving the truck west on I-20 at about 4:30 p.m. Witnesses said the hitched vehicle weaved along the double-lane stretch of road on the Aiken County side of the Georgia-South Carolina border. Mr. Brown seemed to have trouble controlling the car in tow when passing other drivers, particularly on a hill about a half-mile from the scene of the accident, one witness said.

"The car was weaving when he passed," said James Wooten, 70, a Georgia musician who was driving to Augusta's Deans Bridge Road when the pickup passed him.

"He started fishtailing and went off the side of the road," said South Carolina Highway Patrol spokesman Cpl. Tony Bell.

Emergency crews used a jaws-of-life extrication device on the truck to remove Mr. Brown, Jessica Corria; 20, of Mount Pleasant, S.C., who was the child's mother; and the infant's father, Samuel Adams, 21, of Cartersville.

"The child was not in a car seat," said Cpl. Bell. "He was sitting in the female's lap, and she was sitting in the middle."

The adults were taken to the Medical College of Georgia Hospital for treatment. Ms. Corria suffered serious back injuries, and Mr. Brown and Mr. Adams were not seriously injured, said Cpl. Bell.

A stream of onlookers slowed traffic on the interstate as investigators pulled a blue diaper bag from the wreckage. The officials traced skid marks with bright-orange paint, attempting to re-create events that led to the accident.

Mr. Adams was transporting his belongings to Cartersville from Charleston, S.C., because he had gotten a job there.

North Augusta Public Safety, South Carolina Highway Patrol, and the Aiken County Sheriff's Office had officers investigating.

Other traffic fatalities

Including Saturday's infant fatality on Interstate 20, there have been 24 traffic deaths in Aiken County this year.

Some of the victims were killed in multiple death collisions:

On Jan. 11, a father and his two young daughters were killed when an intoxicated teen-ager, Shayna Lively, drove the wrong way down I-20 and crashed into their car.

Five people were killed June 27 when an elderly Florida woman drove across the median and slammed head-on into a car carrying three construction workers from Jonesboro, Ga. The woman and her husband also were killed.

Clarissa J. Walker can be reached at (706) 828-3851 or cjwalker@augustachronicle.com.


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