Female driver crashes into airport’s aquarium exhibit

By Calvin Palmer

A woman with a child on her lap drove into a saltwater aquarium at Tampa International Airport last night.

The 1,500-gallon tank, containing up to 40 clownfish, angelfish and blue tang, was destroyed and 90 percent of the fish were killed.

“It’s unlikely that any of the animals will survive,” Florida Aquarium spokesman Tom Wagner said.

Airport officials say 36-year-old Yamile Campuzano-Martine had an unrestrained six-year-old boy in her lap when her 1994 Ford Ranger jumped the curb and crashed into the aquarium

Campuzano-Martine was cited for careless driving, failure to use a child restraint device and failure to provide a driver’s license, airport spokeswoman Brenda Geoghagan said.

Airport employees gathered some of the water and fish in a bucket, Wagner said.

The aquarium was part of the airport’s El Movimiento del Mar public art program, which began in June 1999 as a partnership between the airport, local artists, Sarasota and Florida Aquarium. The airport spent $200,000 on the exhibit, which included the 12-foot tank.

[Based on a report by The Tampa Tribune and Associated Press.]

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