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Wrong way driver crash in Tampa kills 2

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Posted at 6:45 AM, Feb 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-12 20:15:20-05

A wrong-way driver going northbound on southbound Interstate 275 collided with another driver on the access ramp north of the the Ashley Drive/Jefferson Street exits early Friday morning. 

The crash caused major delays during the morning commute, backing up traffic on I-4 westbound and I-275 southbound from Busch to the downtown area.

At least two people are confirmed dead, according to Florida Highway Patrol spokesman Sgt. Steve Gaskins. The two men were each from different vehicles. 

The incident occurred about 5:40 a.m.

The two vehicles collided nearly head-on and both came to rest in the two southbound travel lanes of the ramp.

A 2006 Acura TL driven by Larry Lorenza Thompson,  47, of Tampa was traveling northbound in a southbound lane on the downtown Tampa access ramp from I-275 SB when he crashed nearly head-on into a 2006 GMC Envoy driven by Eugene M. Fischer, 65, of San Antonio, Fla. The crash occurred north of the Ashley Drive/Jefferson Street exits.

Fischer's granddaughter said he was headed to work when the crash occurred.

"I just wish he was here with us, he was at my soccer game last night," said Mackenzie Fischer.

Both vehicles came to rest in the two southbound travel lanes of the ramp.

Neither driver was wearing a seat belt, and both died at the scene of the crash, according to Gaskins. 

State troopers are investigating to determine if alcohol or drugs played a role in the crash, where Thompson was coming from and where he entered the interstate system headed in driving the wrong direction.

 

Original storyWrong-way driver causes fatal accident on I-275 southbound closes Ashley exit, expect major delays

A wrong-way driver going northbound on southbound I-275 collided with another driver at the Ashley exit.

At least two people are confirmed dead, according to Florida Highway Patrol spokesperson Steve Gaskins. The two men were each from different vehicles. 

The southbound ramp to Ashley is closed. Drivers are advised to avoid the I-4/I-275 interchange and expect major delays on I-4 westbound and I-275 southbound from Busch.