Georgia Co-op Crew Jumps Into Action After Witnessing Van Strike Golf Cart

From left: Brad McGinnis, Zack Madaris, Corey Hendrix and Josh Minnifield of Coweta-Fayette EMC were on the spot when a van crashed into a golf cart. (Photo Courtesy: Coweta-Fayette EMC)

An incredibly dangerous accident had a positive ending, thanks to the timely intervention of four Georgia lineworkers.

Crew members from Coweta-Fayette Electric Membership Corp. were on a job site April 16 when they witnessed a van driven by an elderly woman veer off the road and strike a golf cart driven by a babysitter with a 2-year-old toddler aboard in a car seat.

In a horrific scene, the van flipped on top of the golf cart, destroying it. The collision threw the babysitter and the child out of the cart. The babysitter landed in a wooded area while the toddler was still strapped nearby in the carrier.

Four Coweta-Fayette EMC lineworkers responded quickly when an out-of-control van in Georgia rolled on top of a golf cart with a babysitter and a 2-year-old aboard. (Photo Courtesy: Coweta-Fayette EMC)

Lineworkers Brad McGinnis, Zack Madaris, Corey Hendrix and Josh Minnifield rushed to the scene as first responders. They tended to the child, who did not suffer any injuries, and the golf cart driver, who was treated for minor injuries, cuts and bruises.

They helped to extricate the driver from the van, wrapping her in blankets to protect against cuts from broken glass. The driver also had minor injuries; the cause of the accident is still under investigation.

Chellie Phillips, vice president of communications and public relations for the Fayetteville, Georgia-based co-op, said the lineworkers’ actions occurred in a community near Peachtree City where golf carts are commonly used for short shopping and restaurant jaunts.

“They happened to be in the right place at the right time and did not think twice about responding to a hazardous situation,” she said.

When the team returned to the office, they played down the incident, as lineworkers often do. “They said they were just doing their job. But everybody here was just thrilled about the way they went above and beyond the call,” Phillips said.

Chris Stephens, president and CEO of Coweta-Fayette EMC, praised the quick reaction of the four men, noting that it underscored the value of training.

“I’m extremely proud of our linemen,” he said. “They are first responders and ready to respond no matter the situation. They didn’t hesitate to see how they could help. Our safety and first-aid training are one of the most important things we focus on. I’m thankful it prepared them not for just things that can happen on the job, but for situations just like this.”

Steven Johnson is a contributing writer for NRECA.