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Tuesday, Jan 17, 2017
AP Florida

Troopers: Driver on phone before truck fell from overpass

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) The Florida Highway Patrol says a man received a ticket after dash-cam showed him using a cellphone just before the semitrailer truck he was driving plunged off an Interstate 75 overpass near Tampa.

Authorities say 49-year-old Samuel R. Colon Jr. was seriously injured Jan. 4. According to troopers, when another vehicle changed lanes in front of him, Colon swerved and the rig hit a barrier wall, overturned and fell onto Fowler Avenue below.

Troopers issued a citation Tuesday for using a cellphone while operating a commercial motor vehicle. A first offense comes with a $500 fine.

The FHP report says the dashboard video shows Colon steering with one hand while tapping the cellphone with the other. He quickly grabbed the wheel and swerved as soon as he looked back at the road.