Fulton County Commission Chairman Robb Pitts says he was involved in a Sandy Springs car accident April 5. Pitts said in a phone interview that he was not injured and that another driver involved in the accident was charged with driving under the influence and other offenses.

The Sandy Springs Police Department confirmed the accident and said the other driver was charged with DUI, open container, no seat belt and failure to yield right of way.

Robb Pitts.
Fulton County Commission Chairman Robb Pitts.

“I am grateful to the Sandy Springs Police Department and first responders for their incredible professionalism and quick response,” said Pitts wrote in a press release. “They handled the situation with great care and concern. I am very proud of the work they did this morning. The city of Sandy Springs is in great hands.”

In the phone interview, Pitts said the accident occurred after he and an employee left the Glenridge Drive post office around 10 a.m., headed to a personal meeting. Pitts said the employee driving him in her family car — a Mercedes sedan — turned from Glenridge Drive onto northbound Roswell Road. That is widely considered one of the city’s most dangerous intersections, with plans in the works to redesign it. A man in a Kia sedan traveling southbound on Roswell Road suddenly cut in front of their car near the area of the Prado shopping center, according to Pitts and the police department.

He said that the air bags went off and window glass shattered, while the other driver’s car spun and hit a tree. Pitts said that the woman driving him was uninjured and that his only injury is a sore knee from hitting the dashboard. He said he feels lucky he was in the employee’s “well-built” Mercedes rather than his personal vehicle, a Honda Accord, and that the crash wasn’t worse.

“Just think, man, one way or the other, things could have been really different,” Pitts said. “…Thank God for seat belts and air bags.”

Pitts said he was unsure of the other driver’s condition. He said that driver did not leave his car for a few minutes until approached by Pitts and two witnesses. “Before I got to the car, [I] could smell alcohol,” Pitts said.

Pitts said he was surprised to deal with an alleged drunk driver at 10 a.m.

“This accident is an example of the unfortunate reality that there are individuals driving in our community under the influence at all times of day,” Pitts said in the press release. “We can never be too cautious.”

Pitts is running for re-election to the countywide chair post in May’s Democratic primary against challenger Keisha Waites.

Sandy Springs Police Chief Ken DeSimone recently said that traffic accidents and fatalities are one of his top concerns, and he will seek to hire two full-time traffic enforcement officers.

Update: This story has been updated with information from the Sandy Springs Police Department about the accident and the charges to the driver.

John Ruch is an Atlanta-based journalist. Previously, he was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.