A 19-year-old Tampa man is dead after a collision on County Road 54 in Pasco County Friday afternoon that involved two semitrailers, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
The Highway Patrol did not release the names of those involved in the crash because of its interpretation of Marsy’s Law. Troopers did note, however, that the victim was one of two passengers traveling in a sedan driven by a 20-year-old Tampa woman. Both she and her second passenger, a 20-year-old Tampa man, were taken to a nearby hospital with serious injuries.
According to an initial report from the Highway Patrol, the crash occurred around 12:30 p.m. in a rural, residential area near Zephyrhills, right outside the Upper Hillsborough Reserve. The woman and her two passengers were traveling eastbound on a long, two-lane stretch of County Road 54 when they came up behind a semitrailer driven by a 32-year-old Haines City man.
The sedan followed behind the semitrailer until it attempted to overtake the larger vehicle near Howard Boulevard, a one-lane residential road. The sedan veered into the westbound lane of County Road 54 and had nearly cleared the semitrailer when the driver noticed another semitrailer heading her way, troopers said. The woman driving the sedan veered back into the eastbound lane — clipping the front, left-hand side of the semitrailer she was trying to overtake.
The force of the impact sent the sedan spinning into the shoulder of County Road 54, where it ricocheted off of a guardrail and went into the path of the oncoming semitrailer in the westbound lane.
The driver of that vehicle, a 36-year-old man from Brooksville, struck the left side of the sedan, the crash report said. The driver of the semitrailer sustained minor injuries in the crash, while the other semitrailer driver was unharmed.
The sedan’s 19-year-old passenger died from his injuries at the scene, troopers said.
(Credit: Tampa Bay Times)