An out-of-control pickup towing a trailer triggered a 10-vehicle, rush-hour pile-up Tuesday on U.S. 19 that sent three people, including an infant, to hospitals, troopers said.
The collisions occurred at 5:11 p.m. north of Curlew Road in Palm Harbor, the Florida Highway Patrol said.
A 2012 Ford F250 with a trailer hitched was southbound in the center lane when the driver, Robert Piper, attempted to change to the inside lane. However, he failed to maintain control of the trailer, which struck the curb, causing the pickup and trailer to rotate out of control, troopers said.
Piper’s pickup struck the side of a 2009 Toyota Corolla and a 2004 Ford F250 prior to the trailer becoming dislodged, troopers said. The trailer began to overturn, striking the side of a 2002 GMC Yukon, a 2005 Toyota Sienna, a 2002 Toyota Camry and a 2009 Mitsubishi Galant.
Due to the impact from the trailer, the Mitsubishi struck the rear of a 2012 Chrysler 300, which hit the side of a 2005 Ford Van, troopers said. The Corolla then hit the front of a 2013 Honda Accord.
The driver of the Corolla, Paniphone Cinnavongsa, 35, of Pinellas Park, was airlifted to Bayfront Health St. Petersburg with serious injuries, according to highway patrol report.
The driver of the Mitsubishi, Brittany Adams, 23, of New Port Richey, and her passenger, 1-year-old Carter Knight, were taken to Mease Countryside Hospital with minor injuries, the report said.
The drivers of the other vehicles were not injured, the report said.
Piper, 37, of Clearwater, was cited for careless driving, according to the highway patrol.
The incident closed the southbound lanes of U.S. 19 in the area about two hours, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office.