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Robert Laks, 33, of Palm Coast, Is Killed in SR100 Wreck West of Palatka

| April 11, 2013

Robert Laks was killed near the intersection of State Road 100 and Carraway Church Road west of Palatka Wednesday morning, April 10. Click on the map for larger view.

Robert Laks was killed near the intersection of State Road 100 and Carraway Church Road west of Palatka Wednesday morning, April 10. Click on the map for larger view.

Robert Laks, a 33-year-old resident of Palm Coast, was driving west of Palatka on State Road 100 early Wednesday morning (around 6:30 a.m.), following all laws of the road–and following a Waste Pro garbage truck and a Chrysler 300. Within moments, he was struck by a rock hauler and driven deep in the woods, where local police at first did not notice his presence. It was only when paramedics arrived at the scene that they discovered Laks and his car.

It’s not clear whether he was still breathing in the interim. But he was pronounced dead at the scene.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the Waste Pro garbage truck, driven by Willie Lane, 44, of Jacksonville, and John Manning, 52, of Palatka, made a left turn in front of the rock hauler, triggering the chain of events that followed: to avoid the garbage truck, the rock hauler–a 2005 Mack Semi driven by 59-year-old Mark Robbins of Palatka–swerved left. It did avoid the garbage truck. But it sideswiped the Chrysler, sending it spinning onto the north shoulder of SR100, then it struck the right side of Laks’s F-150, catapulting it into the woods.

Lane and Manning did not suffer any injuries, and their garbage truck was not damaged. The rock hauler’s driver suffered minor injuries and was transported to Shands hospital in Gainesville. The truck sustained $75,000 worth of damages.

James Chapman, 57, was at the wheel of the Chrysler 300. He had minor injuries. The vehicle had damages estimated at $10,000.

When FHP was initially called to the scene, it was on a report of a crash between the rock hauler and one other vehicle. The investigation is ongoing.

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28 Responses for “Robert Laks, 33, of Palm Coast, Is Killed in SR100 Wreck West of Palatka”

  1. Mel Bronson says:

    Once again, apparently speed on that road KILLS. The trucks routinely fly down that road.

  2. J3 says:

    Do we know if Robert was married or had any kids?

  3. Think About it says:

    Bad time in the AM, barely dusk out…So very sorry for the family.

    You think you’re doing fine, driving the speed limit obeying all laws and then someone else takes your life away, so very, very sad..Seems like SR 100 is an accident waiting to happen…

  4. fla native says:

    Prayers to his family.

    • Mark Smith says:

      fl. native that moved to virginia:

      My family and Robert family used to hang together all the time many years ago. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his whole family. M.S. & D.S.

  5. Jennifer Smith says:

    My thoughts and prayers go out to his entire family :( Robert does have a wife and children, whom he loved so dear. He was one of my very close childhood friends and I cannot believe this has happened to him. R.I.P. Robert, I know we went years without seeing or talking to each other, but you will remain in my heart forever!

  6. C13 says:

    All 3 children were his, not step-kids. He was a great father and husband and will be deeply missed.

  7. Mathews' Family says:

    Our hearts and prayers go out to the family. So sorry for your loss.

  8. Sara says:

    Praying for this beautiful family. Please keep them all in your prayers.

  9. Gia says:

    SPEED…respect the speed & use of common sense & that is impossible for some people.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Does anyone know when the services are?

  11. Virginia says:

    Until some of of the people making a opinion on what has happened, needs to take the family of the lost victim into prospect, the mother and father brought up their son to be a supportive person in family and friendship! Until you find out what happened for real lay off. Let the police do there job and the family deal with their loss with out all the B.S. Thank You

  12. Charles "Bub" Robson says:

    Rt-100 is a DEATH TRAP while working as an LEO in Flagler County in the past I had to respond to more fatalities on 100 then any other road in the county including I-95, Rest in peace Mr. Laks. The road needs to be 4 laned and some serious DOT truck enforcement on that roadway.

  13. RIP ROB says:

    RIP ROB, best wishes to Jessica, the Kids and all of his family. This could happen to anybody. Y’all count your blessings and Hug your Kids.

  14. Reality Check says:

    My deepest sympathies go out to his family; does anyone know if the Waste-Pro driver was charged in the accident? In my area the Waste-Pro trucks are on the wrong side of the road and drive way to fast in residential areas. I was driving up my street one morning when a Waste-pro truck pulled right in front of me (in to oncoming traffic lane) I had to slam the brakes on to avoid him; I asked him why he was on the wrong side of the road? His response was shocking, “we get paid by the day not by the hour, so the sooner we get done the more we make” sorry but that is crazy, that is the same reason Domino’s had to do away with the 30 minute pizza deal, to many innocent people were getting killed due to their reckless driving. Not saying that this is what caused it, but the article mentions the fact that the Waste-Pro truck crossed the semi’s path and that is a traffic violation.

  15. Betty Hall says:

    My prayers are going out to the family….God has another angel .may u find the strength to help u thru this time….so sorry for your loss

  16. papro says:

    Judging by the skid marks that the rock hauler left he had to be driving at an extremely high rate of speed, well above the posted speed limit I am sure. I would like to see a follow up story to this with the results of the accident investigation and weather or not charges will be filed. The previous poster got it right when he stated DOT truck enforcement needs to be stepped up, and not just on SR 100. It seems DOT has all but given up on truck enforcement in N Central Fl., and now people are dying.

    • dan smith says:

      rock haulers already get special consideration, they are allowed to haul more weight than other trucks there size..that is why you see the trailers with less length but same weight as bigger trailers.. I know that the DOT has not given up on north central Florida…I am often pulled over on 301 for inspection however. You mostly see rock haulers and log trucks on SR 100 and they are not about to start messing with log trucks(agriculture I guess).I feel terrible for this mans family. (special interest have different sets of rules) at the expense of peoples lives.

  17. sweety says:

    I’d like a follow up as well, I’d like to know if charges were filed. Please do a follow up…

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