As I-75 turns more deadly, what can be done?

GAINESVILLE — Nashville resident Mark Quarles said he and his wife make the drive from Tennessee to the Orlando area on Interstate 75 several times a year to visit family, and he has noticed how speeding increases once motorists cross into Florida, particularly from Lake City south.

Quarles made the trip over the Christmas holiday and said the interstate was more crowded than usual.

“Every year everybody can expect a lot of state troopers in South Georgia. Once they get to the state line, it’s like a NASCAR race because people generally know there is not going to be any state trooper presence on I-75 on the Florida side,” Quarles said. “The stretch between Interstate 10 and Gainesville was madness. People were swerving, tailgating and just being very aggressive. You throw the volume in there and sooner or later somebody’s going to get hurt, and that’s what happened.”

Seven people died in the fiery I-75 crash Thursday. Two others died Thursday in separate crashes, making it the single deadliest day in Alachua County since a pile-up in the fog on Interstate 75 killed 11 in January 2012. It continues a growing trend of accident fatalities…

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