Ponchatoula man killed while walking on I-12

Published 8:52 am Thursday, March 3, 2022

Livingston – Shortly after 3:00 a.m. on March 3, 2022, Troopers from Louisiana State Police Troop A began investigating a fatal crash involving a pedestrian on Interstate 12 east of LA Hwy 63 in Livingston Parish. The crash claimed the life of 44-year-old Benjamin Martel of Ponchatoula.

The initial investigation revealed the crash occurred as Martel was walking in the left westbound lane of Interstate 12. At the same time, a 2021 Freightliner tractor trailer was traveling west on Interstate 12. While Martel walking in the roadway, he was struck by the Freightliner.

Martel sustained fatal injuries as a result of the crash and was pronounced deceased on the scene. The driver of the Freightliner was properly restrained and was not injured. As part of the ongoing investigation, toxicology samples were obtained from Martel and the driver of the Freightliner for analysis.

Troopers urge pedestrians to maintain a heightened level of awareness while walking near the road. Simple precautions such as wearing reflective materials, avoiding distractions, and walking a safe distance from travel lanes while facing oncoming traffic could help prevent many pedestrian related crashes. Troopers would also like to take this opportunity to remind motorists that making good choices, such as never driving while impaired and ensuring every occupant is properly restrained, can often be key to preventing and surviving serious crashes.