Miami-Dade County

Crash history raises concerns about 95 Express lanes

LANE-DIVING: A pickup truck crosses the barricades separating the northbound I-95 express lanes, right, from normal traffic.
LANE-DIVING: A pickup truck crosses the barricades separating the northbound I-95 express lanes, right, from normal traffic. Miami Herald File, 2008

At around 5 a.m. on March 5, 2011, five motorists were standing on the emergency shoulder of the Interstate 95 express lanes after a series of accidents.

Minutes later a driver in a Honda Accord, who police say was drunk, entered the toll lanes, lost control and slammed into all five motorists, police records show. Four died on the scene. A fifth died at Jackson Memorial Hospital.

It was the deadliest I-95 accident in Miami-Dade County for at least the past decade, according to an analysis of crash reports by WLRN, Florida International University professor Jeffrey Onsted and The New Tropic.

The analysis looked at crash data provided by the Florida Department of Transportation for 2005 through 2012, the most recent years available. WLRN then asked the Florida Highway Patrol for fatal I-95 accidents that occurred in 2013 and 2014. Of the thousands of I-95 accidents contained in that collection, none claimed more lives than the March 5, 2011 crash.

The accident highlights safety concerns critics have raised about the six-year-old I-95 express lanes.

To read the full story, go to WLRN.org.

This story is part of the final hour of WLRN's year-long End of the Road project about I-95. Hear the full hour at WLRN.org/EOTR

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