MOULTRIE — Colquitt County roads were again deadly in 2006, but they were not nearly as deadly as in previous years.

There were nine people killed as a result of eight accidents that took place on Colquitt County roads in 2006, and a Colquitt County resident was also killed in an accident in Bulloch County. That is a drop from the 13 fatalities in 2005 and 14 fatalities in 2004, both because of 11 fatal accidents each year.

Sgt. 1st Class Ron Warren, post commander of the Georgia State Patrol (GSP) office in Thomasville, said troopers worked 187 accidents in Colquitt County in 2006. Those accidents resulted in 222 injuries and six fatalities.

Among those fatal accidents were:

• Johnny Dawayne French, 28, of Moultrie, was killed Jan. 5 when his Chevrolet Malibu lost control on Highway 33.

• Karen Denise Dell, 19, of Moultrie, died Feb. 10 as her Toyota Camry entered the intersection of Highway 133 and Sylvester Highway. A GMC Jimmy, driven by Michelle Louque, 36, of Doerun, entered the intersection at the same time as the Camry. No charges had been filed from the accident.

• Joyce E. Freeman, 44, of 4004 Doerun-Norman Park Road, died March 18 when she lost control of her motorcycle as she went around a curve on Sumner Road. Her boyfriend at the time, Robert William Lewis, 49, of 4004 Doerun-Norman Park Road, was charged with driving with a suspended license and leaving the scene of an accident.

• Reginald Leon Dawson, 38, of Albany, died April 2 when his Ford Ranger left Old Doerun Road and hit some trees near Millpond Road.

• Sophronia King Grantham, 45, of Boston, Ga., died May 20 when she lost control of her Ford Explorer on Highway 33 South about four miles outside of Autreyville. Her 14-year-old daughter was also injured in the accident.

• Phillip E “Dick” Causey, 79, of Norman Park, died Sept. 12 as he drove on Highway 37 West outside of Funston and collided with another car.

In addition, Anthony Paul Brown, 21, of 6637 Lower Meigs Road in Colquitt County, died Feb. 3 after he was injured in a single-vehicle accident on Old Register Way in Bulloch County Jan. 29.

In addition to the accidents, Warren said GSP troopers gave 1,444 warnings and 2,342 tickets to drivers in Colquitt County. Troopers made 67 DUI arrests of drivers in the county.

GSP troopers also held three concentrated patrols in Colquitt County in 2006, Warren said. Their biggest event, however, was providing assistance to the Sunbelt Agricultural Exposition in October, helping to direct traffic.

Warren became post commander on July 16, replacing former Post Commander Sgt. 1st Class M.K. Pittman.

Within the city limits of Moultrie, Moultrie Police Sgt. Sam Smith said officers worked 1,253 motor vehicle collisions in 2006. There were 338 injuries reported in the accidents, and there were three fatalities.

Those involved in the fatal accidents were:

• Joshua Lynn Graham, 21, of 1620 Overlook Drive, and Kyle Myers, 17, of 808-C Third Ave. S.E., died April 4 as they tried to cross Veterans Parkway. Kevin K. Gomes, 46, of 8383 Five Forks Road in Boston, Ga., told officers he was driving his Chevrolet C1500 truck and did not see Graham or Myers in time to avoid hitting them.

• Tharpe S. Strickland, 73, of 420 S. Church St. in Doerun, died July 13 after he was hit at the North Veterans Parkway and Highway 319 North intersection. The second driver involved, Margaret Morris, 35, of Omega, told officers she was talking on her cell phone and hung it up as she approached the intersection but could not stop in time to avoid a collision.

In addition to the fatal accidents, Smith said Moultrie police officers worked 755 roadway accidents, 341 private property accidents and 157 other accidents. Officers gave out 4,259 tickets and warnings to drivers within the city limits.

The majority of accidents caused within the city limits were because at least one of the drivers involved did not yield the right of way at an intersection, Smith said. Another common cause of accidents in Moultrie was one driver following another driver too closely and not paying attention to other traffic slowing or stopping ahead of them. There are simple things drivers can do to help reduce the number of accidents and make Moultrie roads safer, he said.

“Pay attention to the flow of traffic ahead, don’t drive too close to the person ahead of you, look both ways before proceeding into an intersection,” Smith said, “and, as always, slow down, buckle up and use a designated driver when drinking.”

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