Trucker and Two Motorists Killed in Fiery Head-On Crash With Teenage Driver
Lillian, FL – A trucker and two motorists were killed in an early-morning fiery crash on Thursday near the Florida-Alabama line when a teenage driver crossed the median and collided head-on with a big rig.
According to a release from the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP), the crash happened around 5 a.m. on U.S. 98 (also known as the Lillian Highway) on the Florida side of the Perdido Bay Bridge.
Authorities said a Peterbilt semi hauling a load of lumber, driven by 48-year-old Sheldon Liddell of Pensacola, was westbound on U.S. 98 as he approached the Perdido Bay Bridge.
At the same time, Russell Drummond, 19, of Elberta, AL, was driving a blue Chevrolet Impala east on the highway.
For unknown reasons, Drummond crossed the center line and into the path of Liddell’s semi as he was crossing the bridge.
The front of the Impala collided with the front of the Peterbilt, causing the semi to erupt into flames as the truck continued west on the bridge.
The semi finally came to rest on the right shoulder of the bridge, and the load of lumber was scattered on both lanes of the highway.
The Impala spun in a counterclockwise direction and came to a stop facing south on the road’s shoulder, against the guardrail, investigators say.
Both Drummond and his passenger, 19-year-old Christian Beech of Lillian, AL, were ejected from the car.
Liddell, Drummond and Beech were each pronounced dead at the scene.
The bridge was closed all day Thursday as crews cleaned up the scene.
Photos from the scene show the semi charred to an almost unrecognizable form.
Investigators have not released a preliminary cause of crash and said the investigation could take between 4 to 6 months.
FHP said they will look at all factors, including whether drugs and/or alcohol was involved in the fatal crash.
Photos courtesy FOX10 News