MANATEE -- A 27-year-old man died and another man was critically injured Sunday when the car he was driving went off the road at a curve in U.S. 19 in Palmetto and hit a tree, according to Florida Highway Patrol.
About 8:38 p.m., Jonathan Melendez was traveling southbound on U.S. 19 approaching a curve at the intersection with Palmetto Point Drive, when the left side tires of his Honda Civic traveled off the roadway and entered the center grass median. Melendez over-corrected to the right, and the car began to rotate and entered the grass shoulder on the west side of the roadway, according to a report.
The car struck a utility pole, and continued moving until the driver's door struck a large palm tree, according to FHP.
A 28-year-old man riding as a passenger in the car was taken to Blake Medical Center in Bradenton, where he was listed in critical condition, according to the report.
Another person in the car was taken to Blake Medical Center for treatment.
Neither Melendez nor his passenger were using safety belts at the time of the accident, according to the report.
The Florida Highway Patrol is investigating the accident at this time.