A head-on collision on Moon Lake Road early Monday triggered a second crash as motorists swerved to avoid the first, the Florida Highway Patrol said.
Two people involved in the head-on crash were seriously injured and taken to area hospitals by helicopter. The two involved in the second collision suffered minor injuries and were taken to Columbia Regional Medical Center at Bayonet Point as a precaution, officials said.
The accident occurred about 8 a.m. near Ridge Road. Trooper S. D. Wheeler said Jack C. Breland, 46, of New Port Richey was heading north on Moon Lake when he tried to pass a car.
Breland's 1985 Dodge van crashed head-on into a southbound 1992 Ford driven by Robert D. Christmas, 39, of San Antonio.
Breland was flown to St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa, and Christmas was flown to Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg. Christmas was in critical condition. Breland's condition was not available.
The second crash occurred as two cars attempted to dodge Christmas and Breland. Brigitte Lucenta, 50, of New Port Richey was northbound in her 1994 Mercury Cougar. Theresa D. Moore, 20, of Spring Hill was southbound in her 1984 Buick.
Both drivers swerved to the north side of the road and collided in the northbound lane, coming to rest on the shoulder of the road, Wheeler said.
Neither was seriously injured. The FHP is investigating the crash.