Two Franklin County residents averted injury when their sports utility vehicle crashed into the water at the Indian Pass boat ramp late Saturday evening.
According to a Florida Highway Patrol report, Felton Gay, Jr., 55, of Apalachicola was behind the wheel of a 2004 Porsche Cayenne that was traveling eastbound on State Route 30B (Indian Pass Road) at about 11:50 p.m.
The vehicle was negotiating a right curve, approaching the boat ramp on the shoulder, when it traveled onto the westbound shoulder and onto the ramp.
“The Porsche was propelled from the ramp and into the water,” read the report. “Both occupants were safely removed from the Porsche and brought to shore without injuries by bystanders that witnessed the incident.”
The report said Gay, and passenger Penelope Hall, 54, of Carrabelle, left the scene prior to the arrival of law enforcement officials, but were found hours later by a Gulf County deputy.
Hall’s beloved dog Buster perished in the accident. “I would never leave my best friend, my love of my life for the last eight years, my dog that went everywhere I went, to work, to the store, everywhere,” she wrote. “I couldn't find him and the water was rising. He wasn't floating or swimming or anything. I had to get out or die myself.”
In a Facebook post, Hall said it was difficult to see the dead end sign, and that the vehicle hydroplaned once it hit a small pile of fine sand and went airborne into the water.
White’s Gulf County Wrecker Service retrieved the vehicle from the water Sunday afternoon.
The report said Gay was charged with careless driving and failure to report a crash. It noted that both people were wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash.