Fanning Springs man killed in head-on crash in Levy County

One driver died and another driver was seriously injured in a head-on crash on U.S. 19 in Chiefland early Tuesday morning. (Courtesy of David Sullivan)

Published: Tuesday, January 31, 2012 at 1:33 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 31, 2012 at 1:33 p.m.

A captain with the Florida Department of Corrections, who was driving the wrong way on U.S. 19 in Chiefland, caused a head-on crash on U.S. 19 Tuesday that killed the driver of another vehicle, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Thomas Bailey, 67, of Fannings Springs, died early Tuesday when his car was hit head-on by a pickup truck being driven by Keith Shane Bush, 40, of Cross City, according to troopers. Bush was driving the wrong way on U.S. 19, a divided highway, in Chiefland, according to FHP.

Bailey was alone in a 1995 Buick Roadmaster, FHP said. Bush, who was at the wheel of a 2005 Ford F150 pickup, was taken to Shands at the University of Florida in serious condition.

Bush is a captain at Lancaster Correctional Institution west of Trenton, assigned to the evening shift. He has worked for the DOC since 1992.

“We are looking into this situation, but have been unable to speak to Capt. Bush,” said Joellen Rackleff, spokeswoman for the DOC.

Troopers said the crash happened at 5:21 a.m. in the southbound lanes of U.S. 19 at Northwest 23rd Avenue.

According to a news release issued by FHP, Bush was headed north in the southbound lanes against the flow of traffic. At the same time, Bailey was headed south in the southbound lanes.

After the head-on crash, the pickup caught fire, according to troopers. Bush was removed from the truck and taken to Shands.

FHP investigators said charges against Bush were pending the results of a blood alcohol test.

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