Tanker Truck Crash Kills One On I-75 In Sarasota

Florida Highway Patrol reported that an accident in Sarasota near Bee Ridge road involving a heavy tanker truck has killed the driver.

The accident occurred on interstate 75 near Bee Ridge Road at 9:40am. FHP stated the driver of the tanker truck, Patrick Harrel, a 42 year old from Sarasota was driving south on I-75 in the slow lane and unexpectedly swerved into the center lane in front of an oncoming pick up truck. The driver of the pick up truck, Robert Richterkessing a 24 year-old from Kissimmee Florida attempted to avoid the tanker truck by turning to the left and braking hard however there was not enough time and the pick up truck collided with the left rear of the tanker truck at speed.

The force of the collision cause both vehicles to spin out of control and rollover into the median crashing through the guard wire. The heavy tanker truck gouged deep tracks into the grassy median as it crashed.

After the accident it took firefighters some time to extract Harrel’s body which had been pinned under the tanker truck. A passenger also in the tanker truck suffered only minor injuries.

Robert Richterkessing, the driver of the pickup truck was unharmed in the crash.

Troopers are investigating what caused the truck to swerve so suddenly, and apparently it was possibly due to weather. Police were also running a toxicology report on the driver of the tanker truck to determine if alcohol was a factor.

About the Author

Bernie Walsh

Education Bernard F. Walsh graduated from the University of South Florida before receiving his law degree from Cumberland School of Law in 1978. During law school, he was selected to serve as a research clerk and intern for a Federal Judge and the U.S. Attorney's Office. He was awarded The National Book Awards for Constitutional Law and Professional Responsibility during law school. Experience Bernard Walsh devoted the next three years to trial work for the State of Florida. This provided him with the opportunity to concentrate on his trial abilities, with numerous high profile trials concerning serious felony crimes. Since 1982, he has exclusively practiced personal injury law and helped accident victims in and beyond Sarasota and Manatee Counties in Florida. Mr. Walsh has been listed in Avvo, an attorney rating site, as Superb. LexisNexis/Martindale-Hubbell, an attorneys rating publication, has rated Mr. Walsh as very high legal ability and ethical standards. Mr. Walsh is listed in National Trial Lawyers Association as one of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers, and was inducted into Southern Trial Lawyers Association. He has also won the largest playground recoveries, one of the top three motorcycle recoveries, and the second largest daycare center recovery in the State of Florida. He is also a member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum. The Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum is a group of attorneys who have achieved career case successes that include multi-million dollar recoveries, settlements and/or verdicts.