Driver killed after tractor trailers crash on I-75 in Hillsborough

8:48 PM, Nov 2, 2012   |    comments
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Tampa, Florida -- A driver changing lanes forced one tractor trailer into thepath of another, causing a major crash and fire that killed a trucker and closed northbound Interstate 75 for nearly 7 hours Friday, the Florida Highway Patrol said.

Photo Gallery: Tractor trailer bursts into flames in I-75 crash

According to an accident report released Friday night, a Ford Focus driven by Alicia Fontes-Ferraz, 20, of Tampa merged into the lane of a semi truck driven by Paul Pitts, 48, of Panama City.  Pitts tried to avoid a collision by merging into another lane, colliding with a second truck that hit a concrete barrier and caught fire.

The driver of the second truck died at the scene.  His identity was withheld until his family could be notified.  Due to extensive damage, the owner of the rig could not be determined. It was hauling aluminun gussets.

Neither Fontes-Ferraz nor Pitts was injured. A passenger in Pitts' truck, Tonya Barnes, 45, of Lynn Haven, Florida, also escaped injury.  All were wearing seatbelts and alcohol was not believed to be a factor in the crash, the FHP said.

The FHP said no one was charged, pending the completion of the investigation.


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