An Alabama woman who was heading off on a girls’ trip with family and friends was fatally struck by a vehicle after attempting to retrieve luggage that had fallen from their truck.
The victim, Elizabeth Ann Atkinson, 47, was traveling in a truck with her two daughters and two friends early Tuesday when luggage fell from the vehicle on Highway 181 near Rigsby Road in Daphne, according to police.
Daphne, a city in Baldwin County, is about 15 miles southeast of Mobile, Alabama.
Atkinson was on the road picking up the spilled luggage when she was fatally struck just before 6:30 a.m. by an approaching vehicle, according to Fox 10.
“We believe the back hatch of the truck came open and a piece of luggage fell out and came open on the highway,” Captain Reginald Ardis of the Daphne Police Department said, according to Fox 10.
Ardis said that the victim and another family member had stopped and were trying to pick up the scattered clothing on foot.
“At some point during that time, she was hit by another vehicle,” Ardis said. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
It isn’t clear what type of vehicle Atkinson was traveling in or what type of vehicle struck her.
Ardis said the driver of the second vehicle was returning home from work and was not speeding.
“The driver had left … had just left overnight employment nearby and was headed to his home, northbound on 181,” Ardis said, Fox 10 reported.
Officers were already on their way to the accident after getting a call just before 6:20 a.m. about a woman in the roadway picking up clothes. Minutes later, another call came in about a person being struck on the highway, police said.
Investigators said Atkinson had just left home with her two daughters and their two friends for a girls’ vacation when tragedy struck.
Investigators said the vehicle that struck Atkinson was traveling within the posted speed limit, having examined the event data recorder from the vehicle, according to USA Today. They also ruled out alcohol playing a role in the incident.
Atkinson’s two daughters on the trip were students at Bayside Academy, located on the Eastern Shore of Mobile Bay, according to the Miami Herald.