Troopers: 3 dead after Turnpike accident
LAKE COUNTY, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - Charred wreckage is what’s left after a fiery crash killed two people and an infant Sunday morning.
Florida Highway Patrol troopers said three people died, including an infant who was ejected from one of the vehicles.
Billy Fagan, a driver who was stuck in traffic for hours said “I just pulled up and both cars were on fire, like huge.”
Fagan said he called 9-1-1.
“As we were walking up and down the side, found a little baby on the ground. It’s sad. I was shaking all over, heart pounding," He said. "It was really sad, but the baby was breathing, making noises," Fagan said.
Troopers said the baby died at Arnold Palmer Hospital in Orlando.
Troopers said both vehicles were southbound on the Turnpike at mile marker 286, near the exit for U.S. Highway 27, around 4:20 a.m., Sunday, when an SUV driven by 24-year-old James Dameron, of Orlando, hit a car.
Both vehicles flipped onto their sides and caught on fire. Dameron was taken to the hospital with minor injuries. Troopers said they will have to use dental records to help identify the other two victims. It was foggy early Sunday morning, but Fox 35 is not sure if it was a factor in the crash.
“We have no idea at all (if fog played a factor). It is still pending in the traffic homicide investigation," said Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Carlos Alves-Ferrer.
For drivers stuck in traffic for hours, it was a highway tragedy on this holiday weekend
“Obviously, our heartfelt condolences and stuff," said Jaeger Figueroa, who was stuck in the traffic jam.
“The crash is a stark reminder for motorists to be safe," said Sgt. Alves-Ferrer. "It’s a long holiday.”
Troopers are asking witnesses to call them at 407-737-2213 if they saw the accident.