Roadway debris creates deadly hazards

Ron Prevatte (Source: WSFA 12 News)
Ron Prevatte (Source: WSFA 12 News)

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - It has been ten years since Ron Prevatte lost his 19-year old son, Aaron.

Aaron died when he swerved and overturned in an effort to avoid a ladder on Interstate 85 South between the Perry Hill Road and Ann Street exits.

"We miss him and still think about him every day," said Prevatte.

And it almost happened again Monday afternoon, not just on the same interstate but within 25 yards of where Aaron Prevatte died.

Luckily for Ron Prevatte he saw what was ahead; a woman literally stopped her car in the middle of the interstate and pulled another ladder to the side of the road.

"I helped block the traffic because she took it upon herself to remove the ladder, and it was a good 15-footer," said Prevatte.

The woman's actions might be courageous perhaps but not necessarily wise, according to state troopers. Sgt. Steve Jarrett warns motorists to never try to move any road debris yourself. Instead, Call 911.

"You also don't want to swerve because you could end up hitting someone in the next lane," said Jarrett.

Alabama troopers say the best way to protect yourself is to simply run over the debris, even though it may cause a lot of damage to your vehicle and cost you a lot of money.

Sgt. Jarrett says the law is clear; drivers must secure their loads. Jarrett says obeying the speed limits is a good way to reduce the risks of falling debris.

As for Ron Prevatte, he is convinced his close encounter was no accident, but a call to do something about it. He intends to come up with a plan to educate drivers on the dangers of road debris in Alabama.

"If they will just take five minutes and really strap down their loads," said Prevatte.

Anything to help prevent another family from dealing with an unspeakable grief.

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