19 cows killed in crash involving trailer on I-75

Driver fell asleep at the wheel, troopers say

SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. – Traffic was at a standstill Thursday morning as cows ran free after a livestock trailer was involved in a crash.

The Sumter County Sheriff’s Office said the crash happened northbound on I-75 at mile marker 321, near the Wildwood, Lake Panasoffkee area, at about 8:20 a.m.

The road was closed until mile marker 329. The lanes reopened at 4 p.m.

“We’re near the Leesburg exit 329. A ton of people are stopping. There’s baby cows running on 75. It looks like there’s livestock apparently dead in the trailer. They took out the guardrail,” a witness told a 911 dispatcher.

According to a report from the Florida Highway Patrol, a man driving a truck hauling the cows fell asleep at the wheel, entered the median and hit a guardrail.

“There’s got to be a couple of dozen baby calves running down I-75,” another caller told a dispatcher.

The vehicle overturned as a result of the crash.

The driver was not injured but 19 cows were killed and another 83 were transported.

About the Author:

Erin began her career at News 6 as an assignment editor, then became a show producer. She is now a digital storyteller as part of the Click Orlando team.