Opelika Police: Lanett, Ala. man fatally thrown over I-85 bridge

tstevens@ledger-enquirer.comMarch 21, 2014 

OPELIKA, Ala. — A 32-year-old Lanett, Ala., man is dead after he was ejected over the South Long Street overpass while driving a pickup on Interstate 85 Friday, according to a news release.

Opelika Fire Department rescue workers and Lifesaver helicopter responded to the accident after learning that a man's 2004 Ford F-150 rolled over during a vehicle accident at about 7:50 a.m. Benjamin Rice went over the guardrail after he was expelled from the truck.

EMS workers rushed the victim by ambulance to East Alabama Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead of multiple blunt force injuries at 8:29 a.m. His injuries were too severe to be airlifted.

Lee County Coroner Bill Harris said Rice was on his way to work at the Vet School at Auburn University when the accident occurred.

It is unknown whether Rice was wearing his seatbelt. Family members told authorities that he normally did buckle up behind the wheel.

Alcohol is not suspected as a factor in the crash, the coroner said in a statement.

Opelika Police are investigating the cause of the crash. Anyone with information should contact the Opelika Police Department at (334) 705-5200 or the Secret Witness Hotline at (334) 745-8665.

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