MANATEE — A driver who fell asleep caused northbound traffic to slow to a crawl at the Sunshine Skyway Bridge Friday morning, according to Florida Highway Patrol.
FHP responded about 7 a.m. to a dump truck-car accident in the outside lane of Interstate 275. One lane remained open, but the wreck caused slow-moving traffic, said Sgt. Steve Gaskins, FHP spokesman.
About 11:15 a.m., the affected lane was reopened.
Brett Richter told an investigating trooper that he fell asleep at the wheel, causing him to rear-end the truck. Richter is charged with careless driving. He was taken to Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg.
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Darel Harris, driver of the dump truck, was cited for driving with an expired registration.
Wreckers removed both vehicles from the scene.
Because a dump truck is involved, Gaskins said a particular wrecker had to respond, adding to the delay of clearing the scene. Accessibility was also hindered due to the crash taking place on the bridge’s incline, he said.