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[06-14-24] Spring Hill Teen Recklessly Driving Leads to Multi-Vehicle Crash on Howard Frankland Bridge

TAMPA BAY, Fla. – A 19-year-old Spring Hill man faces reckless driving charges following a multi-vehicle crash on the Howard Frankland Bridge along I-275.

The incident occurred when Rolando Joaquin Garza, 19, Spring Hill, driving a Ford Focus, was speeding and weaving through traffic, causing other drivers to take evasive actions.

Garza attempted to overtake a Lexus RX350 driven by a 74-year-old Sarasota woman, but the construction zone’s concrete barrier left no room to pass.

The resulting collision caused the Lexus to spin, strike a guardrail, and overturn before hitting an unoccupied Nissan Frontier parked in the construction zone. Garza’s Ford was redirected off the roadway, colliding with an unoccupied Toyota Camry.

Both drivers were transported to local hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries. Garza was subsequently charged with reckless driving by the Florida Highway Patrol.

The crash serves as a reminder of the dangers of reckless driving and the importance of obeying traffic laws, especially in construction zones.

Source : Tampa Free Press

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Car accidents happen all too often in the United States. According to the U.S. Transportation Department, the number of traffic deaths nationwide surged in the first nine months of 2021 to 31,720. The number was 12 percent higher than the same period in 2020 and the highest nine-month figure since 2006. The bustling streets of Tampa are a hotbed for possible car accidents. Arterials such as Colfax Avenue and Federal Boulevard are some of the deadliest roads in Tampa and unfortunately provide many opportunities for potentially serious car accidents. Following the nationwide trend, Tampa car accidents have also been on the rise. According to an analysis from Tampaite, traffic fatalities had reached an all-time high in 2021 with 84 people dying in traffic crashes last year. This had surpassed Tampa’s 2019 record of 71 people. One of the ways the city is trying to cope with these figures is by reducing the speed limit in residential areas from 25 to 20 MPH. This so-called “20 is plenty” ordinance has been lauded by safer streets activist groups such as The Tampa Streets Partnership who see this as the right direction. With only 20% of total traffic accidents happening on roads with speed limits of 25 MPH or less, time will tell if this ordinance will have the desired effect. There are many different types of car accidents, but multi-vehicle accidents are one of them. When two or more cars come together, accidents like this happen all the time. You have a good chance that three vehicles will be hit when two vehicles hit each other. A variety of factors caused these collisions. Distracted driving, speeding, driving while intoxicated, reckless driving, driving in bad weather, driving the wrong way, and failing to obey traffic laws are examples of dangerous behaviors.


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