Florida Highway Patrol identified a 43-year-old Tampa man whose car crashed into the Tampa Bypass Canal on Saturday.
Patrick Wallace Bilder was driving along Adamo Drive, east of Orient Road, around 5 p.m. Saturday when for an unknown reason he crossed the grassy median and into westbound lanes, according to FHP.
Bilder’s 2017 Toyota Camry hit a concrete barrier and spun back into the roadway, colliding head-on with a 2002 Dodge Ram. Bilder’s car became airborne and then hit a 2012 Mazda, according to troopers.
After striking the Mazda, Bilder’s car continued its airborne path off the bridge and into the Tampa Bypass Canal. The car fully submerged and Bilder died at the scene. He was wearing a seatbelt, according to an FHP report.
It is unknown whether or not alcohol was a factor, officials said.
Bilder had multiple civil traffic charges on his record in Hillsborough County Court, including five from 2019. Those charges included careless driving and driving without a license. In October, a woman sued him for auto negligence, alleging that he caused her significant injuries after he rear-ended her car.
The drivers and passengers of the other two cars, including three children, sustained minor injuries and were taken to Tampa General Hospital.