Truck driver recovering after driving rig off I-20, through barrier and into backyard

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A truck driver is recovering after police said he crashed into a backyard in DeKalb County.

The truck plowed through a sound barrier wall on Interstate 20 and into a home’s backyard, close to Snapfinger Road.

Channel 2′s Bryan Mims obtained records that show the truck driver lives in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Dekalb county police say he’s expected to recover.

The 18-wheeler was heading east on I-20 around 2:30 Wednesday afternoon, when something went wrong.

The truck careened off the highway, blasted through the noise barrier wall and smashed into the backyard of Lloyd Phipps, who was home at the time.

“I heard a big bang, and it sounded as if thunder was rolling, so I got up and took a look, and there was a truck in my backyard,” Phipps said.

He said he and his neighbors approached the cab to help the driver, who he described as “in and out of consciousness.”


The accident report lists the driver as Lorne Biles, 49, of Greensboro, North Carolina. The truck belongs to the J.S. Helwig trucking company, based in Terrell, Texas.

A witness told police that the truck started veering off the road. It appeared something was wrong, the witness said, because the driver “never attempted to correct himself.”

The truck driver went to Wellstar Atlanta Medical Center.

Mims checked federal transportation records and found the Helwig Trucking Company has a satisfactory safety rating.

Those records show in the past two years, the company has had 11 crashes with injuries, but no fatalities.

Mims called the trucking company to get information on where the driver was coming from and going, but an employee declined comment.

The employee simply said he wishes the driver a speedy recovery.