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Crash on 290 in the rain caused injuries, two deaths

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Rainy conditions and an unsafe speed caused a two-vehicle accident on U.S. Highway 290 on August 15, leading to two deaths and injuries among the others involved.

According to the crash report from the Texas Department of Transportation, the accident occurred on Sunday, August 15 at 3:11 p.m. Bastrop County was notified of the wreck at 3:14 p.m., and the Texas Department of Public Safety arrived on the scene at 3:32 p.m. The accident happened on Highway 290 about a quarter of a mile east of the intersection with Christensen Road, about two miles east of Elgin’s city limits.

The fatal accident involved two vehicles and six people in total.

The first unit, a four-door passenger car, was driven by a 51-year-old man with a 51-year-old woman in the front passenger seat, both killed in the crash. Both occupants were wearing shoulder and lap belt restraints, and the passenger was ejected from the vehicle. Blood specimens were taken from the driver for drugs and alcohol. The results are not yet known. The middle of the right passenger side of the vehicle suffered the highest severity of damage, and the vehicle caught fire due to the collision.

The second unit, a sport utility vehicle, was driven by a 35-year old woman, with three passengers in the second row of the vehicle: a 12-year-old boy, an eight-year-old boy and a six-year-old girl. The driver and the oldest child were wearing shoulder and lap belt restraints, while the eight-year-old was in a booster seat and the six-year-old was in a child seat; multiple airbags in the vehicle were deployed. The front of the vehicle suffered moderately high damage.

The two people in the first vehicle were killed, with a time of death at 3:18 p.m. The four people in the second vehicle were taken for medical treatment; the adult driver had a suspected minor injury, while the child passengers all had suspected serious injuries.

In the investigator’s opinion, a contributing factor in the accident was the unsafe speed of the first vehicle. The weather was rainy, and the surface of the road was wet.

According to the investigator’s narrative, the first vehicle was traveling west on Highway 290, while the second vehicle was traveling east. The driver of the first vehicle was traveling at an unsafe speed for the roadway conditions—rainy and wet—and left the roadway, entered the center median in a side skid and crossed into the eastbound lanes, where the second vehicle struck the first vehicle and spun around. The first vehicle split in half and caught on fire, and the front end of the car came to rest facing north on the shoulder of the highway while the rear half came to rest in a field. The second vehicle came to rest facing northwest with severe damage on its front. The investigation is not complete, pending a toxicology report for the driver of the first vehicle.

In the investigator’s opinion, the crash resulted in at least $1,000 of damage to any one person’s property. Damaged property other than the vehicles included a barbed wire fence.