Tuesday, October 01, 2013

One Dead In Three Vehicle Early Morn Crash Scene

MOORE HAVEN, FL. -- One person, not yet identified is dead after a crash involving three vehicles near midnight Tuesday.

Update: The deceased driver has been identified by the FHP as Kenneth Peters, 54.

A 2007 Chrysler Town and Country mini-van was traveling eastbound on State Road 78 at 12:42 a.m. Tuesday morning approaching Tomato Grade Road when for unknown reasons, it crossed over the westbound lane in a northeasterly direction, causing the left side to collide with a guardrail on the north side of State Road 78.

The vehicle was redirected toward the southeast and began to rotate counter-clockwise while crossing over the eastbound lane, entered the south grassy shoulder and struck a tree stump, causing it to change direction, rotating clockwise, then tip onto its left side as it crashed into a tree and arrived at final rest facing south.

The unidentified driver exited and walked to the north shoulder of State Road 78 while a 2005 Kenworth truck, driven by Ricky Lynn Mattox, 53 of Avon Park was traveling eastbound on State Road 78, approaching the initial crash scene.

The minivan driver walked south, into the eastbound lane and into the truck's path, causing the
front of it to collide with the pedestrian who was thrown into the westbound lane.

A 2003 Chevy Trailblazer driven by Thomas Lee Miller 51 of Okeechobee was traveling eastbound on State Road 78, approaching the crash scene. The Kenworth truck had stopped on the south paved apron of State Road 78, east of the crash scene with its hazard lights flashing as the Chevy was steered into the westbound lane to pass. The front of the Chevy collided with the pedestrian, who was prone within the center of the westbound lane.

The Chevy continued past the scene, stopped and then returned, stopped again in a protective position near the pedestrian, within the westbound lane. The pedestrian was pronounced deceased by Paramedic Shannon Gagliardi of Okeechobee Fire Rescue.

Charges are pending investigation.

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