One dead in Wimauma van crash

WIMAUMA — A passenger in a van died Saturday night after the driver lost control and flipped the vehicle while driving along State Road 674, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Mario Martinez-Martinez of Wimauma was driving east on SR 674 near Chert Rock Trail at about 5:20 p.m. when he drove off the roadway and lost control of the 1999 Chevy Astro, the patrol said. The van overturned and all three passengers were ejected. No one was wearing a seat belt.

One passenger, who had not been named pending notification of next of kin, was taken to South Bay Hospital and later died, the patrol said.

Another passenger, Manuel Mendoza, 29, of Wimauma was taken to Tampa General Hospital with serious injuries.

The driver and another passenger fled the scene, the patrol sad. The driver was found a short time later and taken to Tampa General with serious injuries.

He was charged with not having a valid driver license and leaving the scene of crash involving a death. Authorities were still searching for the passenger.

One dead in Wimauma van crash 03/20/11 [Last modified: Sunday, March 20, 2011 5:50pm]

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