A man is dead after driver swerves to avoid an animal in the road

A man was killed in a crash in Manatee County Saturday afternoon after the car he was riding in lost control from what the driver says was an animal in the middle of the road, the Florida Highway Patrol reported.

Around 1:25 p.m. the driver of a GMC Yukon was heading westbound on State Road 62 and had just passed the intersection of Carlton Road. Juan Nolasco, 42, of Dover, was a passenger in the vehicle.

According to the driver, an animal moved into the path of the vehicle, causing him to slam on the brakes.

In doing so, troopers said the driver lost control of the vehicle, which then veered off the roadway onto the south shoulder of S.R. 62. The front of the Yukon went into a ditch and then began to overturn, causing the top of the vehicle to slam into a pine tree stump.

The car continued to overturn into a field, where it came to a final rest facing a northeasterly direction, troopers said.

Nolasco died at the scene. The driver was transported to South Bay Hospital with minor injuries.

The driver was also ticketed with careless driving, according to the FHP's report.