TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The Florida Highway Patrol is investigating a devastating crash that left five people dead in Hillsborough County.
Around 9:30 p.m. Sunday, troopers responded to a collision involving an SUV, a pickup truck and a semi-truck in the area of State Road 39 (Paul Buchman Highway) and Bruton Road.
Troopers said the SUV was traveling north on Paul Buchman when it crossed over the highway’s centerline for unknown reasons and went into the path of the pickup truck, which was going the opposite way.
The two vehicles collided nearly head-on, then moments later, the semi-truck, which was heading south, hit the pickup truck, which had its lights off.
The pickup driver, a 53-year-old Valrico man, died at the scene.
Troopers said seven people from Zephyrhills were in the SUV. Four were killed, including the 20-year-old driver, a 12-year-old girl and a 1-year-old girl, who died at an area hospital.
The other passengers, ages 5, 22 and 31, suffered serious injuries.
The semi-truck driver was not hurt.
All those involved were wearing seatbelts, according to the report.
Keith Thompson said he heard a loud noise near his home after the crash.
“I was standing over there on the edge of the grass line and I heard a boom and it sounded like a train moving. Then, I don’t know, about 15 seconds later we heard the second boom and I said, ‘Man, I think that was a car crash,'” Thompson said.