TARPON SPRINGS — At a little after 9:30 a.m. Thursday, Rosie Baxter was in the office of her barber shop when she heard a familiar sound: kaboom!
Knowing this was probably yet another car crash, she called 911, grabbed a roll of paper towels and raced out the door with stylist Tammy Winters to help.
What Baxter and Winters saw was a panicked woman in a wrecked 1999 Mercury station wagon and two badly injured teenage girls.
According to the Tarpon Springs Police Department, a preliminary investigation indicates the car, turning onto Keystone Road from Jasmine Avenue, was struck on the passenger side by a dump truck.
Some occupants of the Mercury were flown to a local hospital with serious injuries, police said. Authorities had not yet released the names of the victims at 7:15 p.m. Thursday.
Tarpon Springs traffic homicide detectives are investigating as a precaution, according to Lt. Barbara Templeton, Tarpon Springs police spokeswoman.
Baxter said she saw that all three occupants were conscious, but the mother had a large bump on her head and "was in panic mode.''
"She couldn't take a deep breath,'' she said. "She was hyperventilating.''
A nurse stopped to offer assistance, the women said.
They said one girl had what looked like a serious head wound, and the other girl had her right leg and arm pinned in the wreckage.
Baxter and Winters said it took an hour for rescuers to remove the teens from the car.
Both Baxter and Winters said a stoplight is needed at Jasmine Avenue and Tarpon Avenue. "There are a lot of squeals, brakes and horns,'' Winters said.
Eileen Schulte can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (727) 445-4153.