Life Is Short

TRAGEDY STRIKES VACATIONING TEXAS FAMILY … By FITSNEWS  ||  A Texas family en route to Disney World met with tragedy this week when their SUV flipped over on Interstate 20  – killing five of the eight occupants of the vehicle. Michael Hardman and Trudi Hardman – both teachers from Terrell, Texas…


By FITSNEWS  ||  A Texas family en route to Disney World met with tragedy this week when their SUV flipped over on Interstate 20  – killing five of the eight occupants of the vehicle.

Michael Hardman and Trudi Hardman – both teachers from Terrell, Texas – died in the crash.  So did Kaci Hardman, 4, Adam Hardman, 7, and Dakota Watson, 15.  None of the deceased were wearing their seat belts at the time of the incident, which took place shortly before 11:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday near Calhoun, Louisiana.

The Hardmans had five children from previous marriages – and one child of their own (who was among the victims).

The driver of the vehicle – sixteen-year-old Andrew Hardman – is said to have fallen asleep and lost control of the 2005 Chevy Tahoe.  He was wearing his seatbelt and survived the accident.  So did his brother Aaron Hardman and Hunter Watson – both of whom were sixth-graders.

“Our heartfelt condolences go out to all of the people affected by this tragic crash,” Mike Edmonson, the superintendent of the Louisiana State Police said. “In an instance this family vacation turned into an unspeakable tragedy.”

Edmonson added “I cannot stress enough the importance of wearing a seatbelt anytime you are in a vehicle.”

We agree … although we maintain seat belt usage is a personal decision and failure to wear a seat belt should never be used by law enforcement as a means to detain or ticket motorists.  As tragic as this story is … the threat to liberty from primary seat belt enforcement is too great.

Just ask Levar Edward Jones.

Our takeaway from this story?

Life is short, people.  Hug the ones you love …


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Dave Chappelle I'm Rick James November 20, 2014 at 4:41 pm

On that note…we here at FITS still think it is ridiculous to require people to wear a seatbelt.


Karen November 20, 2014 at 9:51 pm

It’s your prerogative; but think about the following because you didn’t wear your seat belt:

1) The heartache caused because you were ejected though the windshield or toward your passengers and the inertia of your body broke their necks and killed them;

2) The stress your family will be forced to endure due to the law suits and subsequent litigation because you injured/killed the passengers in your car; maybe you lost control and hit another car and killed/maimed someone else.

3) Victims, health insurers, automobile insurers and any other person or entity will file suit against you or your estate, which will include your wife/husband, your children your parents, your siblings……anyone they can latch on to…..

……and they will all argue the facts…..you failed to abide by the law and wear your seat belt (which costs < $100 and maybe a little discomfort) which may/would have prevented the massive injury or death of families.

Your call, boss……and we wonder why our automobile insurance rates are so high…………..

Dave Chappelle I'm Rick James November 21, 2014 at 8:40 am

You must be new here. Perhaps I forgot to turn on the *sarcasm* font?

While this is a very sad subject–I was poking at the libertarian (FITS) view regarding “victimless crimes.”

Simply put, I agree with you.

Ha, Ha November 21, 2014 at 9:19 am

“I was poking at the libertarian (FITS) view regarding “victimless crimes.”

Yes, that’s quite funny.

Yelsewh November 20, 2014 at 4:41 pm

Wear your seatbelt and be aware of drowsy driving.

Just Really? November 20, 2014 at 5:48 pm

One is inclined to ask…if coming from TX, and heading for FL, why the hell were they on I-20? Seems it could have saved a lot of heartache for everyone involved.

aikencounty November 20, 2014 at 6:56 pm

Said the accident was in Louisiana.

Cartographer November 21, 2014 at 7:31 am

From Dallas area; I-20 to Jackson, Mississippi; 1-55 to Hammond, Mississippi; I-10 to I-75; I-75 to Orlando.

Squishy123 November 20, 2014 at 7:15 pm

In other related news, a couple from Seattle got a flat tire on their way to Seaworld in California.

Mike at the Beach November 20, 2014 at 7:33 pm

“…the threat to liberty from primary seat belt enforcement…”

Histrionic nonsense. Anecdotal bad behavior by cops (which in no way requires seat belt enforcement as a basis) trumps thousand of dead people too stupid to do something as simple as wear a seat belt? On public highways? Causing serious injuries and fatalities that help drive up car insurance rates, med costs, and traffic congestion? Bizarre…

Outlaw all bad behavior November 21, 2014 at 9:23 am

“Causing serious injuries and fatalities that help drive up car insurance rates, med costs, and traffic congestion? Bizarre… immature… almost to the point of incomprehensibility.”

Which is also why would should outlaw drinking alcohol(and Drano too), skydiving, motorcycle riding, & a host of other activities that drive our insurance rates up, med costs, etc.

Mike at the Beach November 22, 2014 at 12:13 am

I won’t argue the underlying premise of your logic, because it’s sound; I totally get where you’re coming from. I just have to temper the argument by saying that (as in most things) overly simple edicts usually don’t translate well to the realities of life. To your analogies, skydiving was part of my life for many years (both professionally and privately), and we lose about two-dozen or so jumpers a year in the US (most of whom had to declare their hobby or vocation on life / health insurance forms). Compare that to the seat belt issue. The best numbers we have (from US DOT and NHTSA) indicate that seat belts save between 11-13,000 lives very year, and that about 3,000 *more* would be saved if all drivers wore their belts. That’s a 9/11 death toll…every single year. I know you may have some semblance of a point in regard to logical standing, but I just have to balance the logic with thousands and thousands of needlessly killed Americans. Roadways are public property, subject to a raft of such regulations. I simply can’t get as fired up as the hard corps libertarians if the government makes me wear a simple strap that has an extremely high rate of statistically proven success in potentially saving my life. I am in no way saying you’re in this camp, but look at the Sovereign Citizen assclowns- they don’t even believe in the government’s right to require a driver’s license or vehicle registration. My point is, we all have to find the spot on that continuum where we’re comfortable. As for me, I’m comfortable with primary enforcement seat belt laws not only because I wear seat belts due to the fact that I dig me and have a lot of responsibility to my family, employees, etc., but because I agree with the balance of preventing thousands of needless deaths. Pure libertarianism is just a bit too “fuck you” for my taste, but i se the other side’s points.

Dan Johnson November 20, 2014 at 7:52 pm

The Levar Jones case was a clean shoot!!!!

9" November 21, 2014 at 4:53 am

Cheap shot for ‘liberty’..

Heartbreaking November 21, 2014 at 8:22 am

Putting an SUV loaded with 8 souls on an interstate, late at night, into the hands of a 16 yr old driver is a questionable decision. Sadly this child will have to live with the fact that the accident wiped out most of his family. He will also be raising his two little brothers. We all make mistakes – in this case – it wasn’t the young guy driving.

Smirks November 21, 2014 at 9:16 am

My takeaway is don’t let a sleepy 16 year old drive a car full of people not wearing their seat belts at 11:00 at night.

Did he even have his license? If he had a beginner’s permit, were there restrictions on what hours he was allowed to drive? Was there a requirement for supervision from a licensed driver above a certain age?

We can argue the entirely unrelated primary seat belt enforcement if you want, but I think there possibly could have been more serious violations here. And don’t call me insensitive either, because this shit didn’t just endanger (and kill some of) the occupants of that vehicle, but could have endangered anyone else near them at the time. Imagine if you and your family were driving in the lane next to them when this happened. That’s not cool.

shifty henry November 21, 2014 at 1:22 pm


itaAboutTime November 21, 2014 at 2:12 pm

Too bad that they were driving on government maintained roads, while headed to a government subsidized amusement park. None of this would have happened if the government wasnt involved. Im surprised you missed the opportunity to pimp for someone.

SCBlues November 21, 2014 at 9:53 pm

Sad and tragic.

RogueElephant November 22, 2014 at 9:55 am

I read this story twice. The blame here belongs to the father for allowing a 16 yr. old to drive that late at night by himself. A school age kid should be in bed at that time. Not being accustomed to driving at night is dangerous enough in itself. Someone, preferably the father, should have been next to him keeping him awake through conversation. As to the seat belt question : it goes back to individual choices. I am one of those that believes the govt. has no business making anyone wear a seat belt but common sense dictates you always wear one.


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