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Separate crashes in Hernando County kill two SUV drivers

An officer radios in the license of a Toyota 4Runner that flipped in a fatal accident at Cortez Boulevard and California Street Friday.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

An officer radios in the license of a Toyota 4Runner that flipped in a fatal accident at Cortez Boulevard and California Street Friday.

BROOKSVILLE — A 58-year-old Brooksville man was killed Friday morning after losing control of his 2001 Ford sport utility vehicle on State Road 50, authorities said.

Jeffery C. Nicoll was headed east on SR 50 about 12:40 a.m. when his SUV swerved into a grass median and then veered right, crossing both eastbound lanes, according to a release from the Florida Highway Patrol. The vehicle drifted onto the shoulder of the road, hit a concrete drainage culvert and went airborne.

Nicoll was ejected from the vehicle as it overturned and died at the scene, according to the FHP. The SUV landed in woods about 52 feet south of the road. Nicoll, who was alone in the vehicle, was not wearing a seat belt, according to the FHP.

In another, unrelated accident Friday afternoon, a man died after his Toyota 4Runner apparently clipped a truck while heading east on SR 50 and flipped over, throwing him from the SUV.

The man was driving east on SR 50 about 2:30 p.m. when his SUV hit a Dodge Dakota pickup truck that was waiting to turn at the intersection of California Street, witnesses said.

The collision sent the SUV spinning into the south shoulder, and the vehicle turned over when it hit something in the shoulder. The man was thrown from the vehicle and landed in the road. The SUV flipped over several times and eventually settled in a ditch on the side of the road.

Emergency personnel arrived at the scene minutes later and pronounced the man dead at the scene. Information about the victim was not released by authorities, pending notification of his relatives.

A deputy identified the driver of the Dodge pickup truck as teenager Brittney Houston. No other information was given.

Eileen Simmers of Brooksville was waiting in her truck at a stop sign at California and SR 50 as the accident unfolded in front of her and her sister. She saw the 4Runner roll over several times, ejecting the man.

"It was like someone pitched (the vehicle) into the air," Simmers said. "I couldn't believe it."

Joel Anderson can be reached at joelanderson@sptimes.com or 754-6120.

Separate crashes in Hernando County kill two SUV drivers 03/07/08 [Last modified: Friday, March 7, 2008 6:59pm]

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