Two teenage girls suffered minor injuries on a recent Saturday morning while sunbathing at Atlantic Beach when they were hit by a pickup truck driven by a city park ranger. The ranger didn’t see the girls lying in the sand as he was making a U-turn.
The ranger had been removing a vandalized garbage can from the beach when the accident occurred. Both 13-year-old girls were injured, with one becoming stuck under the truck’s tire. Their injuries included abrasions and burns. Good Samaritans helped to extricate the girls, who were sent to Wolfson Children’s Hospital for treatment. They are expected to survive their injuries.
Officials plan to cite the city worker for causing the accident. A witness to the accident claims to have yelled in an attempt to warn the ranger after seeing the girls in his path, but the ranger was too far away to hear him.
While this sounds like a freak accident, public workers running over beachgoers is actually not a rare occurrence. Although many beaches prohibit members of the public from driving on the sand, lifeguards and city officials are often allowed to drive large trucks through the sand to help with beach cleanup, maintenance and supervision tasks.
Because sunbathers, beachgoers and vacationers aren’t on a roadway, their attention typically isn’t focused on the possibility of approaching vehicles. For this reason, it is essential that those who drive on a beach take extreme care to watch out for other people.
If you have been hurt in an accident while vacationing in Florida or visiting a beach in the Sarasota area, the personal injury attorneys at the Bradenton firm of Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni & Walsh can help you pursue compensation for your injuries.