Details have been released about the crash that closed southbound lanes of I-75 in Wesley Chapel on December 1 and sent several people to local hospitals.
According to the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP), around 6:30 p.m. December 1, Mona Saint-Juste, 52, of Tampa was traveling south on I-75 in her 1998 Nissan Altima, For unknown reasons, she was stopped in the outside center lane south of the S.R. 56 interchange. Janice Glover, 65, also of Tampa was traveling south in the same lane in her 2009 GMC Yukon.
The report says that Glover swerved to the right to avoid a collision, but hit the right rear of Saint-Juste’s vehicle. A 2011 Toyota Corolla driven by Patricia Hawkins-Savasta, 50, of Ridge Manor, also was traveling south in the outside center lane and tried to avoid a collision, but struck the left side of Saint-Juste’s vehicle.
FHP reports that a 2012 Dodge Charger, driven by 35-year-old Angela Lawson, of Land O’ Lakes was traveling south in the outside lane, but also was unable to avoid colliding with the stopped Altima. Lawson swerved and hit the left rear of the Altima, causing her vehicle to flip onto its roof in the inside and inside center lanes. It also collided with 47-year-old Bert LaFranchi’s 2010 GMC Sierra, separating the front wheel from his vehicle.
All of the drivers were wearing their seatbelts. However, Saint-Juste was transported to Florida Hospital Fletcher in serious condition and Hawkins-Savasta was transported to an unnamed hospital, also in serious condition. Lawson was taken to Tampa General Hospital in serious condition, along with her passenger, a 14-year-old, who was reportedly in critical condition. Alcohol appears to be a factor in Lawson’s collision.
FHP says that the investigation is ongoing and charges are pending. The accident closed the southbound I-75 lanes for two hours. No other details were available at our press time.