Unrestrained Louisiana Toddler Ejected and Killed in Two-Vehicle Crash on I-20

By Orion Blake
Published September 20, 2023

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On September 20, 2023, just past 11:00 a.m., a fatal two-vehicle collision on Interstate 20 east of LA 145 came under investigation by members of Troop F of the Louisiana State Police. The unfortunate incident led to the death of one-year-old Arielle Gray, from Farmerville, Louisiana.

The initial investigation found that Danny Deason, 50, was driving eastbound on Interstate 20 in a 2012 Kenworth tractor (semi-truck) in the left lane. Concurrently, a 2009 Hyundai Genesis was also moving in the same direction, but in the right lane of the same road. Deason then shifted to the right lane, resulting in his truck hitting the rear end of the Hyundai. Following this initial impact, the Hyundai spun around and crashed into the trailer of the semi-truck.

Gray, who was not wearing a seatbelt according to reports from LSP, was thrown from the Genesis and tragically died from her injuries on the spot.

At this point in time, there is no suspicion of intoxication. However, standard procedure required the collection of toxicology samples, which will be sent in for testing. The accident is currently still under investigation.

This week is National Child Passenger Safety Week, and this Saturday, September 23, 2023, is designated as National Seat Check Saturday.

During Child Passenger Safety Week, numerous communities will arrange for certified Child Passenger Safety Specialists to share free advice on the correct use of car seats, booster seats, and seat belts. It is a known fact that child safety seats save lives. The LSP team can guide you on how to choose the right child safety seat, make sure your child is correctly secured in the safety seat, and ensure the seat is properly installed in your car.

All participants in a Child Safety Seat Installation Program will get personal guidance from a nationally certified Child Passenger Safety Technician (CPST) or trainer.

Plan to visit any of the nine locations statewide offering free child car seat checks. No need for an appointment.

So far in 2023, 27 deadly crashes were examined by Troop F, which led to 31 fatalities.