M.A.I.T. Investigation

Who:
Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office
- Major Accident Investigation Team (MAIT)

Deputy Travis Sibley (Driver- Uninjured)
Age: 32
Date of Hire: 10/07/2011
Vehicle: Fully marked 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe

Saralina Ponce (Driver- Minor injuries)
DOB: 11/11/1968
Vehicle: 2016 Nissan Altima

Dawn Ergang (Driver- Uninjured)
DOB: 03/05/1970
Vehicle: 2010 Mazda 6

What:
Deputies assigned to the Major Accident Investigation Team (MAIT) are investigating a deputy involved crash in unincorporated Clearwater.

When:
The crash occurred at about 7:31 p.m. on Thursday, September 19, 2019.

Where:
The crash occurred at the intersection of US Highway 19 North and Curlew Road.

Why/How:
Deputies assigned to the Major Accident Investigation Team (MAIT) are investigating a deputy involved crash in unincorporated Clearwater.

According to investigators, 50-year-old Saralina Ponce was traveling westbound on Curlew Road in her 2016 Nissan Altima. In order to yield to an ambulance in emergency mode also traveling westbound on Curlew Road, Ponce sharply turned her vehicle into the southbound turn lane at the intersection of Curlew Road and US Highway 19 North.

When Ponce yielded for the ambulance, she veered into the eastbound travel lanes at Curlew Road and US Highway 19 North and into the path of 49-year-old Dawn Ergang, who was traveling eastbound on Curlew Road in her 2010 Mazda 6. Ergang’s vehicle struck Ponce’s vehicle, causing Ergang’s vehicle to spin and accelerate westbound into eastbound traffic.

Deputy Sibley who was on-duty and operating his fully marked 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe, was also traveling eastbound on Curlew Road. As he approached the intersection of US Highway 19 North, he observed Ergang’s vehicle traveling toward him after the initial crash. Deputy Sibley maneuvered his vehicle in an attempt to stop Ergang’s vehicle from continuing into on-coming traffic. Ergang’s vehicle struck the front driver’s side of Deputy Sibley’s vehicle and stopped.  

Ponce was transported to a local hospital with minor injuries.

Deputy Sibley and Ergang were not injured. 

Speed and impairment do not appear to be factors at this time.

The investigation continues. 

Posted by Jessica Mackesy Friday, September 20, 2019 12:18:00 AM Categories: Vehicle Crashes

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