Two dead in Hernando County wrong-way crash

Another wrong-way crash raises awareness of how to avoid such tragedies.

RIDGE MANOR, Fla. - Two drivers died in a head-on crash early Tuesday morning.

The wrong-way driver Tony Lavon Warthen collided head-on with another driver Laura Billingsley on Cortez Boulevard near the Ridge Manor Camp Ground around 12:59 a.m. Tuesday, according to the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office.

Warthen, 37, of Brookville and Billingsley, 23, of Webster both died at the scene of the crash, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Authorities do not know exactly where Warthen began driving in the wrong direction.

Crews have reopened Cortez Boulevard since the crash, according to the FHP.

A Hernando County sheriff’s deputy and a third driver both had to swerve off the roadway to avoid collision with Warthen, who was traveling west in the eastbound lane of Cortez Boulevard near McKethan Road. The sheriff's deputy and the third driver were not injured.

The Florida Highway Patrol is investigating the crash.

© 2017 WTSP-TV


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