Three victims of Palm Desert vehicle crash identified

On Thursday, the authorities identified the three victims killed in a two-vehicle crash in Palm Desert as 84-year-old Elana Morron from Los Angeles, 69-year-old Abel Alvarado and 65-year-old Yolanda Alvarado from Anza.

According to Sgt. Don Olson from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, the incident happened on Wednesday around 7.15 pm on Fred Waring Drive near Adonis Drive.

Palm Desert resident Ricardo Meza’s 2021 Honda Accord came at high speed and collided with the victims’ 2015 Nissan Sentra as it took a left turn.

Fire officials said Morron, Alvarado and Yolanda were trapped inside their Nissan and died at the scene. Meanwhile, Meza was injured and taken to the hospital. Olson said his injuries were non-threatening. The authorities have not specified what might have caused the collision.

The deputies have yet to determine where Meza came from. However, NBC Palm Springs recorded that the 24-year-old was heading west on Fred Waring Drive and started at Deep Canyon Road. It is a well-known area where drivers can go over the speed limit.

“Toxicology results are pending,” Olson said. “So it is unknown if drugs and/or alcohol played a factor in this collision at this time.”

Rafael Lopez, one of Palm Desert residents, said he heard something that sounded like an explosion while at home.

“We didn’t hear any brakes or anything like that. There was no screeching. Sometimes when there are accidents, you get a little bit more of a warning, but for this one, it was just out of nowhere. Just a huge explosion,” Lopez said.

He also said that this was the second accident in the neighborhood in the past six months.

Other accidents

A similar accident happened in the adjacent area of Palm Springs. Earlier this week, a Toyota collided with a semi-truck tractor that pulled two trailers around the intersection of Highway 86 and Johnston Street in Oasis, west of the Salton Sea.

According to the authorities, the accident happened at 2 pm on Monday. The accident injured the Toyota’s passengers. It carried a 67-year-old Lucila Lopes-Romero from Pomona, a 63-year-old female and two rear occupants, who only had minor injuries.

Lopez-Romero was transported to the hospital via helicopter but passed away before arriving. Meanwhile, the truck driver was unharmed.

Back in November, another accident happened on Interstate 10 in Palm Desert, claiming the life of a 22-year-old woman named Ana Maria Hollins-Esquivel.

According to the reports, the accident happened on Tuesday morning at around 3:20 am. Hollins-Esquivel did not wear a seatbelt and lost control of her Ford Escape. Her car hit the rear of a Honda Accord while heading east on Interstate 10. She was found dead at the scene and was the only occupant.

California Highway Patrol Public Information Officer David Torres said Hollins-Esquivel continued heading southeast when her vehicle crashed into trees and overturned on the side. The cause of the crash remains unknown.

In late October, a 30-year-old woman was also killed in a road accident after she lost control of her SUV on Highway 74 south of the Coachella Valley. Reports stated the crash happened in Mountain Center, seven miles west of Palm Canyon Drive.

Riverside County identified the victim as Heather Wilson from Aguanga. According to California Highway Patrol officer Jason Montez, she was driving a Dodge Durango on a mountain roadway heading to the west at the time of the accident.

Montez said the vehicle’s right tires drifted into the dirt, and she took a left swerve. As a result, the SUV went off-road, crashed onto a guardrail, and overturned, throwing her off the vehicle. The SUV stopped around 100 feet down an embankment. Wilson was the only occupant of the SUV.