Driver of garbage truck charged in fatal crash

Driver of garbage truck charged in fatal crash

Posted: Updated:
ATLANTA -

Authorities have charged the driver of a garbage truck involved in an accident that left another Department of Public Works employee dead.

The crash happened on Interstate 75 at Cleveland Avenue on Nov. 2. A passenger in the garbage truck was ejected and killed. The driver, Melvin Callahan, was badly injured.

An investigation determined that alcohol was a factor in the crash, according to police. Sources told FOX 5's Morse Diggs that a container of vodka was found in the cab of the sanitation truck, and that the driver's blood-alcohol content level was found to be .136 after the crash. The legal limit for an industrial truck driver is .05.

According to the Atlanta Police Department, Callahan has been charged with homicide by vehicle in the first degree, DUI, reckless driving and failure to maintain lane.

Richard Mendoza, the commissioner of the Department of Public Works, said that the truck involved in the crash did not have a camera installed in some city vehicles. The camera is designed to capture footage that can shed light on incidents in city vehicles.

Gina Pagnotta-Murphy, president of the Professional Association of City Employees (PACE Atlanta), said that while was initially skeptical of the camera program, she's now willing to give it a second look.

A city attorney told FOX 5's Morse Diggs that she'll recommend expanding the camera program into all city vehicles.

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