JUST IN: Crash with alligator sends woman’s car into wipeout on I-75

PBPO News:

Jennifer Rosinski survived Tuesday’s deadly encounter with an alligator.

Jennifer Rosinski’s Ford Escape hit the alligator when it attempted to cross Interstate 75 near North Port, Sarasota Couonty, late Tuesday, May 16, 2017. She thought she had hit a fox. Rosinski, a mother to four children and a Broward County resident, said that she had never been in a serious accident. “Are you kidding?” (Photo courtesy Jennifer Rosinski).

The encounter with the 9-foot reptile by the 34-year-old lawyer was not deep in the Everglades, or at the edge of a backyard pool. It took place on northbound Interstate 75 near North Port, Sarasota County.

This map shows the location of hundreds of gators that were caught in Palm Beach County.

Rosinski spotted what she thought was a foxbolt in front of her vehicle at 9:15 p.m. Rosinski was unable to avoid the collision which sent the Ford Escape in a counterclockwise spin and then overturned at least half a dozen times.

Rosinski miraculously survived with only a cut below her right eye and some bruises.

The gator was not so fortunate. The gruesome injuries were evident in photos taken on the spot.

Rosinski, a Broward County mother of four, said, “I have never been in a serious accident before.” Are you kidding me?

The death of a child is a reminder to alligators in South Florida

Rosinski’s employer owned a Ford Escape and it was destroyed. Rosinski was told by a Florida Highway Patrol trooper that the vehicle probably went airborne before it started rolling. Rosinski crawled out of the vehicle’s back door with the assistance of other bystanders.

Rosinski stated that he thought he had hit a fox, because the fox was moving so fast. Rosinski said that they told her, “You hit an alligator.”

Florida has more than 1,000,000 alligators. However, a quick search of news databases shows that they are rarely involved in serious accidents.

Marco Island Fire Department says that a September fatality may have been caused in part by an alligator on the road. The driver lost control of the vehicle and was thrown into the mangroves.

VIDEO: Gator eating fish at Palm Beach Gardens Golf Course goes viral

However, Gregory S. Bueno, Florida Highway Patrol, said that such encounters are very rare in the vicinity of Rosinski’s crash site.

Bueno stated that you would expect to see something similar on Alligator Alley, the stretch of I-75 running west of Fort Lauderdale and east past Naples. “Normally, there are incidents involving deer and/or cows that escaped from a fence in that area of Sarasota County. But what about alligators? No.”

Rosinski stated that she felt stronger as the Ford Escape continued to roll, and that it was her children who gave her strength — Rosinski’s children aged 14, 10, 4, and 9 months.

Rosinski was not as shocked that she survived the fatal crash as it was for her.

“I was like, “An alligator?” Rosinski asked, “What the hell?” “Who knew?”