GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Two men died in separate rain-related crashes early Wednesday morning as Hurricane Idalia approached landfall along Florida's Gulf Coast, according to Florida Highway Patrol.
The first incident happened just before 6 a.m. along SR-20, just east of SE 60th Terrace in Gainesville, officials said.
A 59-year-old man from Gainesville, who was driving a Toyota pickup trick in "extremely rainy conditions," was traveling westbound when it swerved and veered into a ditch on the north side of SR-20, FHP said.
The truck continued through the ditch and crashed into a nearby tree line.
The driver was pronounced dead on the scene when Alachua County Fire Rescue arrived.
The second incident happened at 6:15 a.m. on St. Joe Road in Pasco County.
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A 40-year-old man from Spring Hill was driving a pickup truck on St. Joe Road during "inclement weather," FHP said. The driver was going "too fast for conditions" and lost control. His truck then left the roadway and collided with a tree.
He died from his injuries at the scene of the crash.