A Specialist assigned to Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM), Washington, died in a PMV-4 mishap 5 May 2021 in Sparta, Georgia, at 1530 local. While on leave, the Soldier was driving to his parent’s house in Ellaville, Georgia, when he was involved in a head-on vehicle collision suffering fatal injuries. The specific circumstances of the mishap, including speed, seat belt use, and alcohol as contributing factors, are unknown at this time. Army notification of the mishap was provided to the 201st Expeditionary Military Intelligence Brigade at approximately 1720. Additionally, the JBLM and Fort Gordon Casualty Assistance Center offices, as well as other government agencies, were notified. The safety POC is awaiting local law enforcement to release information.
Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 33 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-4 mishaps. This mishap was the 28th PMV-4 fatality of FY21.
Stay Alert – Avoid Distractions
1. Never drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
2. Avoid distractions while operating a vehicle.
3. Your focus should be on the task of driving safely.
4. Pay attention to your surroundings, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the area where you’re driving.
5. Focus as far to your front as possible using peripheral vision to scan for obstacles.
6. Maintain the posted speed limit.
7. Always wear your seat belt and ensure your passengers do the same.
• The Travel Risk Planning System (TRiPS), although no longer required, is an excellent tool to assist in planning your trip. For more information on TRiPS, visit
• Build time into your trip schedule to stop for food, rest breaks, phone calls or other business.
• Pull over to eat or drink. It takes only a few minutes.
• Check your route of travel for weather conditions and road construction and plan alternate routes should you need to get off a heavily congested roadway.
• Technology can be an asset if used wisely, whether you use traditional road maps or GPS navigation, plan which route you’ll take ahead of time. This step lets you know which roads you’ll take along your trip. As you plan ahead, you can research the traffic levels of these roads so you can drive safer.
• If you use GPS, your navigation system may even be able to tell you which roads are under construction. When you avoid driving through construction sites, you greatly reduce your risk of accidents and injury.
• If possible, avoid driving at night. Driving conditions are more hazardous at night. Nocturnal animals could wander onto the road. A speeding driver may hit an obstacle and cause an accident.
• Before your trip, look into hotels along your route so you don’t have to make too big of a detour. Additionally, booking a hotel in advance can make stopping at night much easier.
•If your trip is a long one, switch between drivers. Staring at the open road for hours on end can make you drowsy. To avoid falling asleep behind the wheel, switch between drivers every few hours if possible. If you’re driving alone, stop at a rest stop or gas station every couple of hours to stretch your legs and take a break.