Two motorists were killed in a crash Saturday on U.S. Highway 19 in Palm Harbor that closed the southbound lanes for nearly five hours, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
Two Harley Davidson motorcycles were traveling south on the freeway, approaching Eagle Chase Boulevard about 11:20 a.m., when traffic in front of the motorcycles began to slow, the highway patrol said.
One of the riders then lost control and collided with the second Harley, and both overturned and crashed into a Ford F-250 with a utility trailer in a different lane, the highway patrol said.
The first motorcyclist, a 66-year-old Largo man, died at the scene while his passenger, a 62-year-old New Port Richey woman, was airlifted to a local hospital where she died.
The two people on the second motorcycle, a 52-year-old man and a 49-year-old Holiday woman, suffered serious injuries, law enforcement said.
Neither motorist was wearing a helmet, according to the highway patrol.
Law enforcement did not immediately release the names of the victims, saying their families had not yet been notified.
As of 4:10 p.m., the southbound lanes of US-19 had reopened.