Advertisement
  1. News

Clearwater woman critically injured in crash with tour bus

St. Petersburg Fire Rescue workers try to remove an injured woman from a vehicle at 34th Street and 22nd Avenue S in St. Petersburg on Wednesday morning.
St. Petersburg Fire Rescue workers try to remove an injured woman from a vehicle at 34th Street and 22nd Avenue S in St. Petersburg on Wednesday morning.
Published Mar. 21, 2013

ST. PETERSBURG — A Clearwater woman was critically injured Wednesday morning after her car collided with a tour bus carrying a college baseball team from Minnesota.

The crash occurred at 8:09 a.m. on 34th Street at 22nd Avenue S.

Police said the woman, who was northbound on 34th Street, collided with the southbound bus.

"It looks like she made a left in front of the bus," St. Petersburg police spokesman Bill Proffitt said.

Police also said video evidence from a red light camera indicated the bus ran a red light. Investigators are still waiting for video from a different red light camera to determine where the Buick was when the light turned red.

The woman, identified as Virginia Joyce Frazier, 74, of Clearwater, and her male passenger, Eduardo Arana, 48, of Clearwater, were both taken to Bayfront Medical Center as trauma alerts. No one on the Heartland Tour Bus was injured.

Police initially reported the woman died, but then said hospital staff resuscitated her. Her injuries are critical. The man who was with her is expected to live, police said.

A cocker spaniel in the back seat of the Buick also was injured, but survived. The SPCA was called to pick up the dog, police said.

Hours after the incident, the 41 baseball players and coaches, who are from Rochester Community and Technical College, remained inside the bus as investigators handled the scene.

The bus had been on its way to a baseball tournament at Walter Fuller Park. The team missed a 10 a.m. game, but was expected to make one later Wednesday afternoon.

Head coach Steve Hucke, who was sitting near the front of the bus, remembers seeing a black SUV turn quickly in front of the bus, narrowly missing it.

"It was like, 'Oh that was close,' " he said. "Then I saw the white car coming toward us right after that. We felt a little jolt. It happened so quickly."

The bus, driven by David Scott Watkins, 33, of Viola, Minn., slid to a stop several feel away.

Hucke and others on the bus rushed to the Buick. He said they could tell immediately that the Buick's occupants were seriously injured.

The crash remains under investigation.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. California-based customer service company Alorica is permanently closing its call center near U.S. 301 and Adamo Drive and laying off 482 employees. [Google street view]
    The layoffs are scheduled to take place from Feb. 9 through March 27.
  2. Rodney Davis, 56, shown in video released from the Polk County Sheriff's Office of Operation Santa's Naughty List. Davis, a Disney World security guard, is accused of soliciting prostitution. [Polk County Sheriff's Office]
    His arrest was one of 124 in Operation Santa’s Naughty List, a prostitution and human trafficking sting from the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.
  3. The Alumni Singers of St. Petersburg includes three women from Gibbs High School class of 1957. Pictured left to right are those classmates: Carolyn Hobbs, Betty Hayward, and Helen Shaw. The friends are pictured at the "Jesus is King" Christmas concert at Lakewood United Methodist Church in St. Petersburg, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2019. [JOHN PENDYGRAFT  |  Times]
    Three women in the Alumni Singers graduated together in Gibbs High School’s Class of 1957. On Sunday, they gave their annual Christmas concert.
  4. Representatives from the Pasco County school district and the United School Employees of Pasco discuss salary and benefits during negotiations on Sept. 18, 2019. [JEFFREY SOLOCHEK  |  Times Staff Writer]
    The School Board will consider a $2.2 million package at its Dec. 17 meeting.
  5. New Port Richey City Hall  ALICE HERDEN | Special to the Times
    The revamped Sims Park is being used more by daily visitors and events drawing thousands. The New Port Richey City Council discusses how to protect its investment.
  6. Kahlil J. Wilson threatened a mass shooting at Eckerd College after a woman, who was a student there, ended their relationship, police say. [Pinellas County Jail]
    He faces charges of making threats of a mass shooting, making written threats to kill and aggravated stalking.
  7. Clearwater police Maj. David Dalton stands with Yael Hershfield, deputy director of the Anti-Defamation League's Florida region, after receiving the league's law enforcement award Tuesday in Palm Beach. The organization recognized Dalton for “his commitment to ensuring that law enforcement personnel adhere to the highest standards of policing while treating all citizens fairly and with respect," according to a news release. [Courtesy of David Dalton] [Courtesy of David Dalton]
    Clearwater Maj. David Dalton received the Anti-Defamation League’s law enforcement award for “his commitment to ensuring that law enforcement personnel adhere to the highest standards of policing...
  8. Kayakers line up at the boat launch at Weeki Fresh Water Adventures, a kayak and stand-up paddle board rental facility in Weeki Wachee Springs State Park. [MICHELE MILLER  |  Michele Miller]
    Study recommends limiting visitors and where they are allowed to help prevent future damage.
  9. DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times Hernando County School District
    School Board members agree it’s not the best way to save money.
  10. St. Petersburg police are asking for the public's help in identifying a suspect in the Monday morning shooting death of a 24-year-old man. [St. Petersburg Police Department]
    Police are hoping someone will recognize the man seen walking near the scene of the shooting.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement