ATLANTA — A garbage truck went off the road and slammed into two houses, injuring a grandmother.
NewsChopper 2, which flew over the scene, captured images of the damage to the homes in the 4000 block of Kimball Road.
Neighbors said they thought the crash which made their homes shake was an explosion. They told Channel 2 Action News no one was in the truck when it crashed.
The crash woke 11-year-old Thaddius Hodges from a sound sleep.
“(I thought) somebody was shooting. I was doing the school drills. I thought it was a tornado. People shooting at the same time,” Thaddius said.
He and others went outside and saw the garbage truck had slammed into his home and the home next door. The crash sent Thaddius' grandmother to the hospital. The child told Channel 2 Action News he saw her bleeding.
“From her foot and from her head,” Hodges said.
“We had an equipment failure,” James A. Jackson said, deputy commissioner of Public Works.
Jackson said a crew of three workers got out of the truck to pick up trash around the area.
Jackson said the crew followed procedure. He said department policy allows all crew members to leave a truck if the safety brake is engaged.
Witnesses said the truck then began to careen down the road and crashed into the homes, rupturing a gas line in the process.
Jackson said an investigation is underway to determine where the workers were.
“It is an equipment failure. That is apparent based on the fact the equipment left where it was located,” Jackson said.
A grandmother in the second home told Channel 2 Action News she is lucky she and her grandchildren were in another part of the house when the truck hit.
She said the crash frightened her and made a lot of noise.
“Very loud. Scared me extremely bad,” the woman said.
The Public Works deputy commissioner said the workers will be drug tested as it is policy when something like this happens.
He also said the city will take care of the families as the homes sustained quite a bit of damage.
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