Florida Road Ranger Severely Injured While Responding to a Tractor-Trailer Accident
A 38-year-old valued member of the Florida Road Ranger Service Patrol remains in the hospital this weekend after suffering severe, life-threatening injuries while working the scene of a tractor-trailer accident along the southbound lanes of Interstate 75 near State Road 50 in Brooksville.
According to initial collision reports from officers with the Florida Highway Patrol operating within Hernando County, it was shortly before 2 a.m. on October 7, 2021, when a 62-year-old trucker driving a tractor-trailer full of frozen food was traveling in the southbound direction of I-75. It was as he approached the S.R. 50 overpass that the traffic in front of his vehicle suddenly started to slow down. In order to avoid a collision with the other motorists on the interstate, the truck driver steered his vehicle away from the upcoming traffic and crashed the semi into a concrete barrier along the roadway, which caused it to burst into flames. The driver miraculously managed to escape the fiery collision with only minor injuries.
Hernando County authorities, including the 38-year-old road ranger, were dispatched to the scene of the tractor-trailer accident at approximately 2:30 a.m. As troopers with the Florida Highway Patrol assessed and investigated the crash site, the road ranger started to set up a detour route to direct the flow of traffic away from the area of the accident. While he distributed the emergency safety cones along Exit 293, a 72-year-old man from Tampa driving a 2000 Toyota Sienna entered the vicinity and decided to drive around the traffic cones. This temporary lapse in judgment put his vehicle on a collision course toward the road ranger and before either man could react, the car crashed into the emergency worker as he was standing in the street.
The 38-year-old road ranger was medevaced to a local hospital in serious condition. He was said to be in stable condition at the time of this publication. The driver of the Toyota Sienna, 71-year-old Everett Simpson, was cited for careless driving and has since apologized to the victim for his reckless actions.
Since the program’s creation in 2001, 79 road rangers have been severely injured and 5 have lost their lives in the line of duty.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.