On Wednesday, November 29, 2017, at around 7:04 p.m., deputies from the Polk County Sheriff’s Office responded to a two-vehicle crash on Hwy 27 near Overpass Road, southwest of Frostproof. Two of the three people involved were injured, one of whom was injured critically.
According to the preliminary investigation, a green 2012 Kia Soul, driven by Sally Cruz Navarro, 42, from Frostproof, and a gray 2013 Toyota Tacoma, driven by Dennis Eckert, 45, from Frostproof, were both travelling north on Hwy 27. Eckert’s truck was struck in the rear-driver side corner by Navarro’s car. Eckert’s truck rolled onto the roof, and came to a rest in the median. The Navarro vehicle came to a stop across both northbound lanes.
Mr Eckert was wearing his seat belt, and was not injured. Ms Navarro also wore her seat belt, and had only minor injury. Her daughter, Jasmin Navarro, 19, of Frostproof, had not been wearing a seat belt, and was ejected from the Kia. Jasmin Navarro was initially transported to Florida Hospital Heartland Medical Center in Sebring, and then flown to Tampa General Hospital with life-threatening injuries.
This area of Hwy 27 has four lanes, curves to the east, and a has a posted speed limit of 65 mph.
Impairment and/or distracted driving do not appear to have been a cause in this crash. Further investigation will determine if speed was a factor.
Northbound Hwy 27 was closed for approximately four hours during the rescue, investigation, and clean up. Charges are pending completion of the investigation, which is ongoing.