SEBRING — Police have found a motorcycle rider at fault in the Wednesday wreck on U.S. 27 at Hammock Road.
Crash reports from the Sebring Police Department state that 75-year-old Earnest Evans made an improper lane change when he exited AMVETS Post 2, just north of the intersection and crossed three lanes as he turned south on the highway.
He was transported to AdventHealth Sebring by Highlands County Emergency Medical Services with injuries to his right leg and back, reports said. Meanwhile, police issued a traffic citation.
The wreck occurred at 4 p.m. Wednesday. Crash reports state Michael Anthony Charles Leone, 16, was southbound in a red, four-door 1999 GMC Jimmy on U.S. 27 in the inside lane. As he approached Hammock Road, Evans' red 2004 Honda Goldwing trike pulled in front of him, reports said.
Evans told police that he did not see the Jimmy as he crossed the three southbound lanes. He said he was hit from behind when he stopped in the left turn lane to make a U-turn to go north.
Anthony Leone told police he attempted to stop, and police noted skid marks in their report. However, the Jimmy's front left corner hit the Goldwing in the rear left corner, knocking the motorcycle into the median and flipping Evans over the back of the motorcycle onto the ground.
Anthony Leone was uninjured and his passenger, 47-year-old Erin Leslie Leone — owner of the vehicle — was also unhurt.
Evans had no passengers.
The motorcycle was inoperable. Damage to the Jimmy was $4,000 and it was towed from the scene.
The wreck closed the intersection to any U-turns from the southbound lanes, and traffic backed up in southbound lanes to Ryant Boulevard at times.
Emergency responders on scene noted that, at that time of day, Hammock Road and Sparta Road are two places where traffic gets heavy and backs up, increasing the potential for crashes.