ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – The Florida Highway Patrol is investigating two deadly wrong-way crashes within two days.
“We have to remember the top three reasons for people going the wrong way: Number one is impairment, number two is somebody who is probably in the beginning stages of dementia or confused and then unfortunately, number three is suicide,” FHP Lt. Kim Montes said.
Montes added they are working to figure out why a driver ended up going in the wrong direction on Interstate 95 Sunday morning.
According to the FHP, the driver was going north in the southbound lanes and slammed into a car head-on.
Two passengers in that car were killed and another was critically hurt. The victims were driving back from St. Augustine.
“A reminder to drivers, because we are seeing more and more of these wrong-way crashes, the left lane is typically where we see these impacts,” Montes said.
In a second wrong-way crash, another driver was traveling west in the eastbound lane of State Road 408 Monday morning.
Photos from the “Wrong-Way Detection System” installed on the expressway show a white Ford Mustang going the wrong way.
Montes explained the system notifies troopers within seconds when a wrong-way driver is detected on camera.
“The fact that we are instantly being notified about a wrong-way driver, that we can send our resources instantly, that drivers can now be notified, we didn’t have that before and we also never knew how many people go up the ramps the wrong way until we had this system,” she said.
The driver who went the wrong way on SR-408 Monday did not survive.
Troopers tell us the other driver hit was taken to the hospital with injuries and is expected to survive.