Tow truck driver, another man dead after being struck by SUV on I-295, FHP says

2 dead after I-295 crash
2 dead after I-295 crash

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A tow truck driver and another man died after they were struck by a vehicle early Sunday morning on Interstate 295 near Blanding Boulevard, the Florida Highway Patrol said.

The crash happened about 2:40 a.m. and closed the service road to Collins Road for hours.

According to the Highway Patrol, an SUV was traveling north on I-295 on the service ramp when it struck a tow truck driver and the driver of a vehicle that was being picked up by the tow truck. Troopers said the SUV then spun and collided with a concrete wall on the right shoulder.

Troopers said the tow truck driver and driver of the stranded vehicle were standing at the rear of the tow truck -- which was parked on the left shoulder, partially blocking the left travel lane -- when they were hit.

Troopers said the tow truck driver, a 30-year-old Orange Park man, died at the scene and the other pedestrian, a 19-year-old Orange Park man, was taken to a hospital, where he died.

The driver of the SUV, a 23-year-old Jacksonville woman, was not injured, troopers said.

Fatal accident on I-295W at Blanding Boulevard
Fatal accident on I-295W at Blanding Boulevard

Florida Department of Transportation spokesperson Hampton Ray said Florida has a “move over” law, which requires drivers to move over and change lanes to give safe clearance to law enforcement officers, firefighters, ambulances, utility workers and, in some cases, tow truck drivers and disabled vehicles.

“It’s not only the law, but it’s also safest for you as a driver and for people that are disabled on the side of the road,” Ray said.

Ray said that if you are parked on the side of the road, it’s extremely dangerous, so be cautious.

“No. 1 piece of advice would be to stay in your vehicle. You’re safest in your vehicle. Wait for law enforcement,” Ray said.

It’s unclear if Road Rangers were on scene at Sunday’s crash. If you need Road Ranger assistance, call *347.

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