One dead, three critical in accident near Genoa Lane
MINDEN – A Carson Valley teen was killed Monday near the Highway 395 and Genoa Lane intersection when the driver of a northbound Acura Integra lost control, and her vehicle ran through the median, was vaulted into the air, and struck the victim’s Ford Escort.
The Acura was occupied by three female juveniles. The driver of the Escort was also a juvenile whose age was unclear and name is being withheld until her family can be notified, said Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Todd Hartline.
Both southbound lanes and one northbound lane of Highway 395 were closed shortly after the 1:10 p.m. accident. Southbound traffic was directed onto State Route 206 through Genoa. Highway 395 reopened at 6:30 p.m., Hartline said.
The impact of the airborne Acura crushed the hood and roof of the Escort. The driver was pronounced dead at the scene.
A Las Vegas resident near Airport Road at the time of the accident, said the car did a 360-degree turn.
“The driver lost control northbound on Highway 395, went off the road and into the median,” said Addi Birdwell. “It caught air and did a whole corkscrew.”
More than a dozen emergency personnel worked to extract the three teens from the Acura. Two were taken by helicopter and one by ambulance to area hospitals.
All remained in critical condition, according to Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Michael Primeaux.
John Torrico of Gardnerville was in a southbound vehicle when the accident occurred. He went to the Acura to help the teens. The driver was not breathing, but he was reassured that the other two teens were talking.
“The driver wasn’t saying anything,” he said. “And then she started breathing.”
Lori Edwards of Gardnerville also saw the accident from her southbound vehicle. Like Birdwell, she didn’t see the Escort land, but she did see the vehicle up in the air.
“It was pretty close,” she said. “All of a sudden you saw dirt and stuff flying in the air. My heart just sunk and I thought, ‘Oh no!'”
The Acura also hit a southbound Ford Bronco driven by 36-year-old Gardnerville resident Christopher Buchanan.
He suffered minor injuries but was alert at the accident scene and filling out a report. A bumper from the Acura lay in front of his car, which was damaged on the front driver’s side.
“I was right there,” he said. “I couldn’t swerve. . . . I was going to try to swerve to the right. It just happened so fast.”
Metal debris, pieces of plastic and shattered glass covered about 50 yards of Highway 395.
Alcohol is not believed to be a contributing factor.
Contact Maggie O’Neill at mo’firstname.lastname@example.org or 782-5121, ext. 214.