Early Morning Wrong Way Crash Claims Life Of One
A wrong way crash on Interstate 4 claimed the life of one and shut down a portion of the interstate for hours.
Eastbound lanes of I-4 was closed following the alcohol-related, wrong way crash on the interstate near Mile Marker 33 and U.S. Hwy 98 N, said officials. This included the on ramp at U.S. Hwy 98 N.
The driver, Travis Coats, was arrested Saturday in connection with the crash. Florida Highway Patrol said Coats was traveling west in the eastbound lanes on the Carpenters Way Overpass on I-4 in a 2005 Dodge Ram when he collided with another driver.
Upon impact another vehicle traveling east crashed into the second driver, but thankfully only suffered minor injuries.
The second driver, a 32-year-old male driver of a Ford Fushion, suffered fatal injuries and died at the scene of the crash. His identity has not been released by authorities yet.
Coats and the third driver were taken to Lakeland Regional Medical Center for treatment of minor injuries.
Coats is being charged with DUI manslaughter, DUI property damage, DUI and driving in the wrong direction.
Polk: Fatal alcohol-involved wrong-way crash EB I-4 @ 33MM claims 1. EB lanes closed. pic.twitter.com/DFuk95cwOy
— Sgt. Steve Gaskins (@SteveG717) January 14, 2017
Steve Gaskins, a spokesman for FHP, tweeted shortly after 7 a.m about the crash and loss of one life involved in the three-car crash.
According to the FHP website, the accident was reported shortly after 3 a.m.
Since the crash the eastbound lanes of I-4 have been reopened and are running at normal speeds.
This is not the first wrong way crash to happen on I-4. Though these incidents seem to be more common on Interstate 275, just back in October a drunken woman was arrested after traveling the wrong way on I-4 and crashing into a barrier in Maitland.