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GDOT launching statewide guardrail inspection following 11Alive investigation

11Alive discovered "Frankensteined" guardrails on Georgia roads, one of which was involved in the death of a teenage girl.

ATLANTA — Every guardrail across the state of Georgia will be inspected to ensure they're safe for drivers, following an 11Alive investigation into "Frankensteined" guardrails. 

A "Frankensteined" guardrail is created when parts from different manufacturers are put together to make a guardrail. Those parts are not meant to be mixed together and can have deadly consequences. 

Our investigation found an 18-year-old girl, Isabella Alonzo, struck a "Frankensteined" guardrail in Peach County in 2020. Her parents say the guardrail penetrated her car and impaled her, separating her spine from her pelvis. She died at the hospital. 

11Alive found at least three more "Frankensteined" guardrails that were still on Georgia roads this year. After notifying GDOT about this, the agency quickly replaced the faulty guardrails. 11Alive Investigator Kristin Crowley continued to ask GDOT if it would search for these potentially deadly devices.

RELATED: 'It cuts people in half' | Potentially dangerous guardrails being removed in Georgia following 11Alive investigation

"GDOT will conduct a statewide review of guardrail end treatments to gauge compliance and will replace any installations which do not meet required standards," the agency said.

11Alive told Isabella's mother, Cathy, the news of GDOT's decision. Cathy said it was the good news she's waited two years for. 

"I don't ever want anybody to have to go through what we've gone through and what got taken away from us," she said. "She (Isabella) had so much life. Then - I just - I would not wish that on anybody. Now, you know. I don't want to say that I want her death to matter, but I do want it to matter. I want it to make a change."

GDOT has not given a date or time for when this statewide inspection will begin. It said it will share those details with 11Alive once it has them. It also said it will provide the results of the inspection once completed. 

  

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