911 dispatchers tracked wrong-way driver on I-275 before fatal crash
TAMPA, Fla. (TBO.com) – Florida Highway Patrol dispatchers, after receiving numerous calls about a wrong-way driver on Interstate 275 early Sunday morning, began watching the 2001 Ford Expedition on highway surveillance cameras, but lost sight of the vehicle moments before it crashed head-on into a car killing four University of South Florida fraternity brothers.
The driver of the Ford, Daniel Lee Morris, 28, also was killed in the fiery crash.
The glimpse into what went on that night was made public this week in a series of 911 calls released by the Florida Highway Patrol, along with a chilling recorded telephone conversation between a Hillsborough County 911 dispatcher and the highway patrol.
After a flurry of calls from motorists reporting the wrong-way driver, the highway patrol dispatcher, speaking to the county dispatcher, says: “We just got three or four calls on it. I’m hoping it doesn’t hit nobody.”
Just then, the video cameras along the interstate, which show real-time traffic, but do not record images, are monitored and highway patrol dispatchers watch helplessly as the white SUV barrels south near the Fletcher Avenue interchange.
“Where’s he at?” the dispatcher says. “He just passed Fletcher. He’s in the fast lane passing Fletcher right now. He’s in the middle of the road now. What’s he doing? He’s just passed Fletcher.”
Photo Credit TBO.com
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