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Sunday, May 27, 2018
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Troopers: U.S. 19 northbound closed for accident clean-up in Countryside

CLEARWATER — Northbound lanes of U.S. 19 remain closed in the Countryside area while workers clean up a chemical spill after a Terminix truck flipped over Tuesday morning.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, Abdelali El Faqir, 53, was driving northbound on U.S. 19 in the center lane toward Republic Drive, just north of Westfield Countryside Mall. Faqir stopped the car for a passing fire truck that had entered the intersection.

Jagger Lee Martinez, 25, driving a 2007 Jeep Wrangler, plowed into the back of the truck, causing both vehicles to flip. Dry and wet chemicals spilled from the Terminix truck, troopers said. Faqir, of Clearwater, and 25-year-old Martinez, of Safety Harbor, were taken to Bayfront Health St. Petersburg with minor injuries.

Cars are being diverted from the highway at State Road 580. State patrol Sgt. Steve Gaskins said he expects lanes to be closed for another hour.

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