On Saturday, January 11th, a 15-year-old driver with a learner’s
permit ran a red light at a busy Oviedo intersection, causing an accident
that resulted in one fatality. Now, it could be a few months before troopers
decide whether charges will be filed against the driver.
Florida Highway Patrol Spokesperson, Sgt. Kim Montes explained to reporters
that traffic fatality investigations often take two to three months. Accidents
involving drivers who have a learner’s permit are not uncommon,
but fatal accidents involving such beginner drivers are mostly unheard
of in the area, Montes noted.
The teenager was operating the vehicle legally, with a permit that he obtained
in July, Montes said. The teenage boy’s mother was riding with him
in the front passenger seat at the time of the accident. They were headed
east in a Ford SUV on Red Bug Lake Road when the driver ran the red light
at Aloma Avenue that afternoon. The SUV crashed into the right side of
a Buick sedan, which was heading south on Aloma Avenue.
FHP said 68-year-old Donna Guehrn of Iowa, a passenger in the Buick, died
in the accident. Guehrn’s daughter, Lora Bryan of Oviedo, was driving
the car – but suffered only minor injuries. The initial impact of
the crash pushed the Buick into a Nissan Xterra in the lane beside it,
troopers said. The Xterra SUV then overturned and its two occupants, Angela
Lanciano and Dawn-Marie St. Pierre, suffered minor injuries.
Police say there is no initial indication that alcohol or driver-distraction
(cell phone use) played any role in the accident, Montes said. Investigators
plan to reconstruct the accident to determine his speed. No further word
was given on any pending charges or civil claims linked to the accident.