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Cortez Bridge reopens after accident

CORTEZ — A semi tractor trailer collided with a Volkswagen driven by a Bradenton Beach man this morning at the top of the Cortez Bridge. The collision pushed the truck cab over the edge of the bridge but no one was seriously injured.

The accident closed the bridge in both directions for hours. It was reopened to traffic at 1:41 p.m.

George Gonzales, 32, was driving his Cummings Food semi westbound to make a delivery to Publix on Anna Maria Island around 11:23 a.m. and crashed into an eastbound VW driven by Jonathan Quick, 43, of Bradenton Beach. Quick was headed to Venice to go kite surfing. Gonzales of Brandon apparently lost control of the truck, police said.

Both men suffered only minor injuries, police said.

Capt. Larry Linehauser, spokesman for the Manatee County Public Safety Dept., said Quick's car inadvertently saved Gonzalez' life by blocking the truck from going over the side.

There was no fuel spillage reported.

Drivers are encouraged to use the Manatee Avenue bridge.