Published 7:00 am Wednesday, July 9, 2014
A fatal accident on Interstate 59 Tuesday morning is suspected to have been the result of an underlying medical condition.
Picayune Police Department Assistant Chief Jeremy Magri said officers were dispatched to the area of mile marker 7 in the northbound lane of the Interstate at about 10 a.m. in reference to a vehicle that left the roadway.
They arrived and spoke with witnesses and a friend of the deceased to learn that the vehicle was southbound on the Interstate when, for an as yet unknown reason, the vehicle left the roadway, crossed the median and the northbound lane before coming to rest in the wooded area, Magri said.
Pearl River County Deputy Coroner Albert Lee said the deceased has been identified as 66-year-old Michael Milligan of Slidell, La.
Lee said he spoke with Milligan’s friend, who met him at a local gas station. Milligan requested the friend follow him to the hospital in Slidell because he was experiencing pains in his arm and face. Magri said Milligan declined to be driven to the hospital, so the friend offered to follow behind.
As they traveled towards Slidell, Milligan’s vehicle left the roadway and crossed the median and the northbound lane of traffic, Magri said.
Magri said emergency personnel responded, later pronouncing Milligan dead on the scene.
While the exact cause of the accident is under investigation, Lee said preliminary information suggests Milligan may have passed out while driving, causing him to leave the road.
So far Lee suspects Milligan’s cause of death to be due to blunt force trauma, but an autopsy will be conducted.
No other vehicles or passengers were involved in the accident.