Man charged with careless driving after fiery crash on Hwy. 98

Photo: A vehicle caught fire after the driver collided with a power pole, a natural gas line and a tree on Friday, Dec. 29th 2017. Photo Courtesy: Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office

Traffic on Hwy. 98 in Mary Esther was blocked for over an hour and a half on Friday morning due to a traffic crash involving a natural gas line.

According to Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) press release, on Friday, Dec. 29th Zachary Fleming, 29, of Leonardtown, Md., was driving east on Hwy. 98 when he attempted to change lanes.

Fleming lost control of the vehicle, causing it to leave the road and drive onto the shoulder of the highway.

FHP reported that Fleming's car then collided with a power pole, a natural gas line meter, and a tree, causing it to become engulfed in flames.

Fleming was transported to Fort Walton Beach Medical Center where he was treated for minor injuries.

The collision happened near Rush Park Circ. at 6:44 a.m. on Friday. According to the Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office, both lanes of Hwy. 98 were blocked until approximately 8:27 a.m.

Fleming has been charged with careless driving with a suspended license.

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