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Tuesday, May 22, 2018
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Black ice in Tampa? Leaking water truck blamed for crash on Veterans Expressway

TAMPA — A woman in a black BMW encountered a hazard on the Veterans Expressway she probably never expected in Tampa, especially on a dry day. 

Black ice. 

The woman was driving south about 6 a.m. Wednesday when she hit a patch of ice just south of Hutchinson Road, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. The BMW spun out and struck the center median wall. 

BRUTAL COLD: Black ice, record cold for Tampa

"The driver is okay and crews are on hand trying to remove the ice," said Sgt. Steve Gaskins, a spokesman for the Highway Patrol.

The culprit, according to Gaskins: a malfunctioning water truck. A construction crew in the area was operating the truck when it began to leak.

"Water at a certain temperature freezes," Gaskins said. "Water froze to the road. That’s why we have ice in Tampa."

At one point, crews had to shut down both southbound lanes to remove the ice with chisels and salt. At the 8 a.m. hour, one lane was open to traffic.

A spokeswoman for the Florida Department of Transportation did not immediately have information about the incident.

The region is under a freeze warning until 9 a.m. as temperatures have dipped to below freezing across much of the area — including a reading of 29 in Tampa that tied the record low set in 1981, 10Weather WTSP meteorologist Grant Gilmore said.

Stay with tampabay.com for updates.

Contact Tony Marrero at [email protected] or (813) 226-3374. Follow @tmarrerotimes.

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