‘I was already holding my breath,' says truck driver in Dames Point Bridge crash

Four days after a crash left a semitrailer dangling off the Dames Point Bridge, the truck driver is speaking out.

The crash involved several vehicles and brought traffic to a standstill for hours.

The driver told Action News Jax reporter Ryan Nelson in Spanish, that he started holding his breath because he wasn’t sure if he’d be going over the bridge and into the water below.

Mario Guzman, a semitruck driver and a pastor, told Nelson he gives thanks to God for allowing him to walk away from the crash.

According to the FHP, on Dec. 21 Guzman’s semitruck hit the concrete barrier wall on the outside shoulder of the Dames Point Bridge and the trailer fell into the water below the bridge.

ORIGINAL STORY: Jacksonville's Dames Point Bridge cleared after semi dangled over side for more than 4 hours

“In my mind, I thought that I was going to go down there, and I was telling my wife that I was already holding my breath just in case I fell into the water,” said Guzman.

State troopers say a tow truck was rear-ended by a black pickup truck, causing both trucks to spin out into traffic and causing the black pickup truck to hit a red car. Investigators say Guzman crashed while trying to avoid the other vehicles and was trapped inside.

“Well, I felt that the truck started the turn and when it stopped, I tried to get out as soon as possible,” he said. “I tried to exit through the door and it was stuck.”

Guzman said he was able to kick out the windshield and make his exit. He said his faith is only stronger now, and he’s reminding others to be safe this holiday season.

“I am a pastor, and I am continually praying,” he said. "I said, God, you are with me because of what happened here.”

A barge is supposed to remove the trailer in the coming days.


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