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Unrestrained Driver Dies and Unrestrained Toddler Injured

Lafayette Parish – On June 2, 2021, just before 6 a.m., Louisiana State Police Troop I was notified of a single-vehicle fatal crash on Interstate 10 near mile marker 105, west of Louisiana Avenue. The crash claimed the life of 40-year-old Medora Lynn Burgess of Natchez, MS.
The initial investigation by State Police revealed that the crash occurred just after 4 a,m. as Burgess was driving a 2009 Hyundai Santa Fe SUV westbound on I-10. For reasons still under investigation, Burgess’ vehicle ran off the roadway to the right. Upon doing so, the SUV entered the tree line and struck a tree in an area difficult to see from the roadway.
Burgess was unrestrained and suffered fatal injuries. She was pronounced deceased at the scene by the Lafayette Parish Coroner’s Office. A toddler in the SUV was also not restrained. He was transported to a local hospital with moderate injuries.
Impairment is suspected and a standard toxicology sample was obtained for analysis. This crash remains under investigation.
Louisiana state law requires vehicle occupants to be properly restrained in all seating positions, day or night. Child safety seats and booster seats offer the best protection for children in the event of a crash. Caregivers are required by law to ensure children are properly restrained in an appropriate child safety seat, booster seat, or seat belt based on the child’s age, weight, and height.
Troop I has investigated 26 fatal crashes resulting in 33 deaths in 2021.