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"1 problem after another' on I-275

From accidents and oranges to fires, Interstate 275 had a bad day Sunday.

It all started on the Pinellas County side of the Howard Frankland Bridge about 4 p.m., when Beverly Olseth of St. Petersburg crashed into the dividing wall near the construction on the Fourth Street ramp.

Olseth wasn't hurt, but the accident backed up traffic on the bridge for hours and touched off a string of incidents that kept law enforcement officials busy into the evening.

Olseth was driving south in the left lane when a car in the right lane swerved left to avoid a disabled van, said Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Steven Hough. Their cars never touched, but Olseth was forced into the wall. The driver of the other vehicle didn't stop, Hough said.

After the accident, troopers responded to at least 15 other calls nearby, from fender-benders to overheated cars, Hough said.

"Once one thing starts out there, it's one problem after another," he said. "We've had so many calls out there, it's unbelievable."

The night was topped off about 8 p.m. when a truck dumped several orange crates onto the shoulder, Hough said.

Meanwhile, firefighters were busy farther south at the Gandy Boulevard intersection cleaning up a brush fire for several hours Sunday afternoon. The fire burned several hundred yards of grass and brush .

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