HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office is currently investigating a deadly crash that killed an 18-year-old and injured a 16- and 19-year-old.
Deputies say on Tuesday around 11:45 p.m., the 16-year-old was driving a 2004 Ford Expedition and was speeding in the eastbound lanes of Ralston Road in Plant City.
When the teen approached County Line Road, they lost control after hitting a speed bump, according to deputies. The Ford Expedition left the roadway and crashed into a tree.
HCSO said a 18-year-old passenger was ejected from the car and died at the scene. The right rear passenger, a 19-year-old, received non-life threatening injuries. Both the driver and the passenger were taken to South Florida Baptist Hospital.
At this time, deputies say they do not believe alcohol or drugs contributed to the crash.
Both the driver and 18-year-old were enrolled at Armwood High School. The other passenger is a recent graduate.
“Our hearts break for the victim, his family, and especially his friends who now have to live with this traumatic and devastating loss,” said Sheriff Chad Chronister. “The teen driver, in this case, had a learner’s permit, which under Florida law, means they can only get behind the wheel if there’s a person 21 years or older in the front passenger seat. This law exists for a reason and it’s imperative for parents to make sure their teen understands the dangers and rules of the road. We lost a young person who had a whole life ahead of them because of one bad decision that could have been avoided.”
The investigation is ongoing.
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