Levi Whitten Killed in Crash with 18-Wheeler on Woodruff Farm Rd in Columbus, GA
Columbus, GA — February 6, 2023, 19-year-old Levi Whitten died in a collision with a semi-truck on Woodruff Farm Road in Columbus.
Authorities say the incident happened Monday at the intersection of Woodruff Farm and Corporate Ridge Parkway. Investigators released few specifics about the collision but say Whitten was driving a passenger vehicle that somehow collided with a tractor-trailer in the light-controlled intersection. Images taken at the scene show a badly-damaged sedan stuck partly beneath a semi-truck's trailer.
Whitten was critically injured in the wreck and was later pronounced dead at an Atlanta hospital. No other injuries were reported.
No further information is currently available.
I read the same reports as anyone else, which means I'm equally confused about what happened here. That confusion brings to mind an important point I regularly mention, though: Never jump to conclusions. Rarely is that said more than after accidents involving young drivers.
When teenagers and young adults get in accidents, I've found people have a troubling tendency to decide they were at fault. I've seen references to inexperience at the wheel or youthful carelessness many times, but clearly that's unfair and presumptive in a situation like the one above. With so few known facts investigators still have lots to do, like analyze the scene, find witnesses, forensically examine the vehicles and obtain their electronic data, look for video footage from the truck or any nearby cameras, and round up any other helpful information. As they continue connecting the dots it's important not to guess what picture they'll ultimately make.
I'm not suggesting the accident's cause must be particularly complex, but surely most would agree that it's worth the effort to know for certain. The end of a young man's life is more than enough reason to learn the whole story, and his loved ones deserve no less. I hope before all is said and done that authorities find them answers that provide some closure.