JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – More than 100 crashes have occurred in the last five years along a stretch of Interstate 95 near Lem Turner Road, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
It’s the same stretch where troopers said two young people died Tuesday when a semitruck lost control and slammed into a car.
The Highway Patrol provided the News4Jax I-TEAM a map showing the multiple crashes along the curve where the semitruck lost control. Data shows 127 crashes at that section, and the dots on the map clump together as the interstate curves just past an on-ramp near the site of Tuesday’s deadly crash.
Of those 127 crashes in the last five years, according to the Highway Patrol, Tuesday’s was the only one that was fatal.
According to the crash report, the semitruck lost control while traveling south along the curve, collided with a concrete barrier and struck a car that was in the right lane. Troopers said the driver of the car, who was identified by family as 21-year-old Hannah Krajewski, and the passenger, a 23-year-old man, died. The driver of the semi, a 65-year-old man, was uninjured, troopers said.
FHP data shows it has worked 109 crashes in this section of roadway, 33 of them with injuries. The Highway Patrol said the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office has worked 18 crashes, with six injuries.
Tuesday’s crash was about 250 to 500 feet south of the I-95 and Lem Turner Road interchange, and the data shows 22 crashes in that range. Most of them were rear-end collisions or off-road accidents.
The Florida Department of Transportation said it looks at the crashes and data to determine if changes need to be made.
FDOT said there is a balance in what its safety team must do when making changes to roads for safety.
“That includes human behavior. It includes the design of the roadway. It also includes methods that we can take to make things safer,” said FDOT Community Outreach Manager Hampton Ray.
Ray added that the cost, reducing the speed limit and reconfiguring intersections are also some of the things that FDOT looks at following crashes.
Currently, there is a resurfacing project underway where the deadly crash happened Tuesday, but Ray said there was no construction that day.
He said FDOT will review the crash to see what it can do to make the roadway safer.
“There are some improvements that are being made there, in particular, a signalized intersection at I-95 and Lem Turner Road that improved safety there,” Ray said. “But since it did occur within project limits, we are having our construction team review and see if there are any things — if it’s signage, if there’s any maintenance of traffic — if there’s any way that we can improve the actual traffic flow there while the area is under construction then we’ll certainly do that.”
FDOT said it’s likely there will not be any changes to construction because there was no construction at the time of the crash.
The accident is under investigation and charges are pending, according to the Highway Patrol.