Cortez Bridge head-on crash injures 3

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Airbags deployed in the head-on crash at 2:50 p.m. April 12 crash on the Cortez Bridge.
A head-on crash April 12 on the apron on the east side of the Cortez Bridge stops motorists and boats on the Intracoastal Waterway. Traffic was stopped for about two hours. Islander Photos: Kathy Prucnell
Sgt. Robert Spurlock of the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office investigates the April 12 crash on the south side of the Cortez Bridge as firefighter Tyler MacDonald stands by the West Manatee Fire Rescue engine. Islander Photo: Kathy Prucnell

No life-threatening injuries were reported in an April 12 head-on crash where the ramp meets the east side of Cortez Bridge.

West Manatee Fire Rescue Lt. Nate Bergbom said emergency medical services took five people to Blake Medical Center in Bradenton.

A family of four from Connecticut in a Nissan Rogue was traveling east over the bridge when an Oldsmobile sedan attempted to pass another vehicle and struck the Nissan head-on, according to Manatee County Sheriff’s Office public information director Dave Bristow.

Bernadeta Wilkins, 32, of North Port, was ticketed for careless driving, passing in a no-passing zone and wearing no seat belt after WMFR firefighters extricated her from the Oldsmobile, according to first responder reports.

Bristow said three adults were injured but “nothing life-threatening.”

The two children in the Nissan were not hurt, according to the MCSO report.

Bradenton Beach Police Department controlled vehicle traffic at the bridge for about two hours.

After the impact, the Oldsmobile Alero pointed west in the eastbound lane and the Nissan Rogue faced east, also in the eastbound lane.

4 thoughts on “Cortez Bridge head-on crash injures 3

  1. Lynn

    That girl who needed to more than a slap on the wrist…she died last night. So those reports on nonlife threatening injuries were false.

  2. Erik Nelson

    I was on the scene within 10 minutes of the accident, and this is absolutely ridiculous… Why would anybody be dumb enough to try to pass someone on a bridge !?!?! The driver responsible to get far more than a slap on the rest in a ticket or two ! She could’ve EASILY killed someone !! This poor family on vacation is in the HOSPITAL and those poor kids will have this nightmare for years to come . Idiots like this should have their drivers license taken away immediately and permanently .

  3. Mad about false news

    First of all get your facts straight before you go publish info like this. Second of all who gave you permission to put her name and info in the paper. This girl was cited for only not wearing a seat belt and she is in the hospital right now fighting for her life. In case you didn’t read there was two other articles that clearly said that two people were sent to trauma. This girl actually had to be cut out by the jaws of life. So I don’t know what lala world your living in that you think everyone was fine but you need to get your facts straight before you report it. Thanks

    1. bonnerj

      We base our reporting on facts in the law enforcement reports … which are public information, including names. Who knows where your information comes from…? — Bonner Joy


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