Fatal car accident claims 2 lives
Two drivers died Oct. 4 in an early-morning head-on crash three miles south of Quincy. Four passengers, three of them children, were injured and taken to local hospitals.
A third vehicle that happened upon the accident scene roughly one minute later also crashed when the driver swerved to avoid the wreckage.
The Washington State Patrol said driver Ernesto Nunez Espinoza, 26, veered across the center lane on Highway 281 between Quincy and George about 12:09 a.m. His southbound 2001 Ford Mustang struck the northbound 2004 GMC Yukon driven by Claudia A. Garcia, 37.
Both drivers were from Quincy; they were pronounced dead at the scene. Nunez was driving with no seatbelt engaged, police said.
All the injured passengers were traveling in Garcia’s SUV, including 48-year-old Salvador Gonzales of Quincy, who was airlifted to Central Washington Hospital. He was in satisfactory condition Wednesday morning.
Three children in the vehicle were treated for injuries at Quincy Valley Medical Center, then were transferred to Central Washington Hospital. Erlinda Gonzales, 9; Melissa Gonzales, 15; and Rosendo Gonzales, 10, all have since been treated and released.
Moments after the wreck, driver Alberto Cortes Cruz, 35, swerved right and lost control when his northbound 1995 Honda Civic came upon the crash scene. His car rolled and came to rest upside-down, injuring Cortes and his passenger Iris R. Correles, 23. All were taken to Quincy Valley Medical Center, including a 2-month-old baby, who police said was examined as a precaution.