Four wheeler accident suspected to involve alcohol

Published 9:15 pm Friday, March 28, 2008

A fatal four-wheeler accident may have involved alcohol use, said Sheriff’s Dept. Chief Investigator Shane Tucker.

The Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department received word an accident took place at the intersection of Old Kiln Road and Pecan Grove Rd., Wednesday night at about 9:53, Tucker said.

Because of the accident Thomas Waller Diggs, 32, of McAllen, Texas, died on scene from head injuries when he hit a tree on the side of Old Kiln Road, said Pearl River County Coroner Derek Turnage.

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Apparently some out-of-town co-workers were having a party that allegedly involved alcohol and a four wheeler, Tucker said. Participants of the party appear to have been riding the four-wheeler illegally on the roadway, he said.

“So many people ride four-wheelers on the road,” Tucker said.

Diggs was riding the four-wheeler on Pecan Grove Road approaching the intersection of Old Kiln Road. When Diggs approached that intersection, he appeared to have gone straight through the intersection leaving the roadway, striking a tree, Tucker said.

“Operating any motor vehicle under the influence is asking for trouble,” Tucker said.

Tucker and Turnage encourage people planning on riding four-wheelers to use protective gear, such as helmets, gloves, proper footwear and padding.

Turnage said the death is still under investigation and his office is awaiting toxicology reports. Every year Pearl River County reports about one or two fatal accidents involving four-wheelers, he said.