MARIETTA, Ga. – Two construction workers who were hit by a driver who failed to yield to the lane closure they were setting up are now fighting for their lives in Grady Memorial Hospital.
“Really our message tonight is one of please keep these construction workers in our thoughts and prayers,” said Marietta Police Officer Charles McPhilamy.
The Marietta Police Department’s Selective Traffic Enforcement Program (STEP) Unit is investigating that life-threatening pedestrian collision. They said it took place Mar. 12 at around 1:40 a.m. on Roswell Road under the I-75 overpass.
Jimmy Varraza, 38, and Oscar Aguilar, 28, both of Metro Atlanta were identified as the victims. They were setting up a traffic arrow board to show drivers the lane was closed.
Officer McPhilamy said a gray 2019 Volkswagen Jetta traveling eastbound failed to yield to the lane closure, plowed right through the board and struck both of the pedestrian construction workers.
They said the driver then exited his vehicle and fled on foot before first responders could arrive.
Both victims were rushed to the hospital to recover from the critical injuries they sustained.
Officer McPhilamy said so far, investigators were able to determine the driver in the crash was not the owner of that vehicle and that the car wasn’t reported stolen.
“They’re also talking with that registered owner of the vehicle to try and determine what exactly took place, who had possession of that vehicle when this happened,” he said.
Police said it was too early in the investigation to know if it was distracted driving or impaired driving that caused the incident, but the driver could be facing a number of charges including hit-and-run and serious injury or death by motor vehicle.
“When a giant sign is placed in the roadway with an arrow and you physically take out the two workers behind it, certainly there were things at play that took that individuals attention off of where it should’ve been which is on the road,” the officer said.
Investigators are still searching for that driver.
Ahead of the upcoming St Patrick’s Day holiday, McPhilamy said this should serve as a reminder to drivers to be careful out on the roads.
FOX 5 was told investigators are in contact with the construction company and the owner of the vehicle. Officials said the two victims are responsive but still not out of the woods yet.
Anyone with any information on this incident is encouraged to reach out to the Marietta Police Department at 770-794-5364.