LUBBOCK, TX (07/14/2014) — Two people have been killed and one critically injured following an accident caused by a wrong-way driver in West Texas today.
While details are still sparse, it’s been reported that 62-year-old Patricia Mendez (of Anton, Texas) and her 8-year-old granddaughter Ava Lucia McWhirter have died following an accident on U.S. Highway 84 (reportedly around 25 miles northeast of Lubbock. According to Texas DPS spokesman Bryan Witt, the accident was caused by a wrong-way driver.
The wrong-way driver, 51-year-old Jeffrey Howard (of Wolfforth, Texas), was reportedly driving his SUV westbound in the eastbound lanes of US 84 when the head-on collision occurred. Other motorists had called 911 to report the wrong-way driver before the accident. Witt says that an officer was in route trying to catch up to the driver, but the collision occurred before the officer could intervene.
Patricia Mendez and Ava McWhirter were pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. Jeffrey Howard was transported to a Lubbock hospital in critical condition. His condition was later upgraded to satisfactory.