Last week we wrote about a pedestrian accident on Miami Beach that involved a former police officer’s early morning ATV ride. Over the weekend another pedestrian accident occurred on the beach in Florida. This time the accident occurred in Orlando and involved a lifeguard operating a Beach Patrol pickup truck. According to police officers who investigated the accident, the lifeguard from Volusia County had not taken a required beach-driving safety course.
On Sunday morning a lifeguard with Volusia County was in charge of an area of beach and was informed of some broken glass near the Dunlawton Avenue beach ramp. The lifeguard was using a pickup truck to patrol the beach and turned around when he was informed of the glass.
As the lifeguard turned the pickup truck around, the right front tire of the truck ran over a 33-year-old, female beachgoer who was lying on her stomach outside of the beach-driving lanes. The beachgoer was taken to the hospital and is fortunately in good condition as of Monday. The lifeguard had been given a safety manual on beach driving but had not completed the 16-hour beach driving safety course.
The course goes through specific beach driving techniques like watching for sunbathers in the blind spots of the vehicle. The course is required of patrol officers but not of lifeguards; however, lifeguards do drive trucks to patrol the beach.
There are 16 miles of drivable beach in Volusia County. There have been almost 50 pedestrian accidents on the beach involving injury or fatality since 1995. Two four-year-old children were killed in separate Ohio pedestrian accidents on the beach last year. So far this year, five beachgoers have been injured.