Three teenagers were hurt -- two with life-threatening injuries -- in a crash involving a construction truck this morning in Dunedin, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office said.
According to a report, at 11:43 a.m., a Ford F350 driven by Shalindra Kasinath, 31, of Zephyrhills was northbound at a slow rate of speed in the outside lane on Belcher Road. She was pulling a directional arrow sign directing drivers to the median lane in a construction zone .
Meanwhile, a 2002 Ford Sport Track driven by Cory Ziegler, 18, of Tarpon Springs, was northbound in the median lane of Belcher Road.
Investigators say Ziegler moved into the outside lane to pass a slower vehicle. As he changed lanes, he saw the arrow board and tried to get back into the median lane near Highland Woods Drive to avoid the trailer sign. His truck struck the trailer, however, causing him to lose control and the vehicle to fishtail and then roll.
Ziegler’s three passengers -- James Spence, 18, of Tarpon Springs, and Jessie Aldridge, 17, and Kyle Aldridge, 17, both of Palm Harbor -- were ejected from the vehicle. Deputies said the three did not appear to be wearing seatbelts. Ziegler, who was wearing a seatbelt, was not ejected.
Ziegler was not injured. Spence and Jessie Aldreidge were taken by air to Bayfront Medical Center with life-threatening injuries. Kyle Aldridge was transported by ambulance to St. Joseph’s Hospital with minor injuries.
Kasinath was not hurt.
Deputies say speed appears to be a factor in the crash.
Traffic in the area was shut down for approximately 6 hours while deputies conducted their investigation.
The investigation is continuing.