Fiery crash in Polk County kills female driver who stopped in middle of road, deputies say

Polk County investigators say a woman "hesitated" on the roadway, leading another driver to crash into her vehicle. The woman's vehicle caught fire, and she died from her injuries.

The crash occurred around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday on Scenic Highway North in Babson Park. Deputies said 53-year-old Patricia Robarts left her workplace, The Coop restaurant, and exited to Waverly Road. 

She paused at the intersection, and began turning left onto Scenic Highway, but then "hesitated and stopped in the westbound lane," according to investigators. 

Robarts' 2018 Kia Stinger was spotted by a 19-year-old driver who was traveling inside a Chevy Tahoe on Scenic Highway, officials said. He braked and swerved, but was unable to avoid the collision.

READ: Lawmakers propose bill to conduct study on phosphogypsum

The Tahoe struck the Kia on the driver's side door. Investigators said the Kia caught fire and Robarts died at the scene. 

The 19-year-old was taken to a hospital with minor injuries. He has since been treated and released.

The young driver didn't appear to be impaired, deputies noted in a press release, but they are still investigating the collision.