Beaumont man dies in I-10 crash; vehicle struck guardrail, driver ejected

Published 2:19 pm Wednesday, May 24, 2017

JEFFERSON COUNTY — A Beaumont man was killed and a passenger injured after the man’s vehicle struck a guardrail and he was ejected around 11 p.m. Tuesday.

The crash happened in Interstate 10 about 10 miles west of Beaumont.

Preliminary reports show that a 2004 Nissan passenger vehicle was traveling eastbound on I-10. For an unknown reason, the driver lost control of the vehicle and struck a guardrail, according to a press release from the Texas Department of Public Safety.

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The driver of the vehicle, Tommy Lee Benitez, 20, of Beaumont, was pronounced dead at the scene by Justice of the Peace Ray Chesson. Benitez was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected from the vehicle.

The passenger of the vehicle, 20-year-old Esmeralde Reyna of Beaumont, was transported by ambulance to Baptist hospital with minor injuries.

The fatal crash shutdown all eastbound traffic lanes for approximately two hours, but have since reopened.

This is an ongoing crash investigation as Troopers work to determine the exact factors that contributed to the crash.