2 killed in separate area vehicle crashes Tuesday night

Published 1:47 pm Wednesday, April 13, 2022

A pair of recent fatal crashes are having long-reaching impacts on local families.

Multiple area law enforcement agencies are following up with investigations to determine culpability and appropriate response.

Near Orange

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A Bridge City woman was hospitalized and a Louisiana woman killed in a violent Tuesday night crash near Orange.

The Texas Department of Public Safety is investigating the fatal crash from State Highway 62 that took place approximately half a mile north of Orange.

The preliminary investigation indicates at approximately 11:35 p.m., a 2017 Ford car was traveling south while a 2011 Ford car was traveling north.

It is reported that the 2017 Ford traveled into the oncoming lane and struck the 2011 Ford head-on.

The driver of the 2017 Ford, identified as 48-year-old Stephanie Smith of Dequincy, Louisiana, was pronounced deceased on scene by a justice of the peace.

The driver of the 2011 Ford, identified as 29-year-old Christina Johnson of Bridge City, was taken to St. Elizabeth Hospital for treatment.

The investigation remains ongoing, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Wrong way I-10

A local woman was killed late Tuesday night following a wrong-way collision on Interstate-10, authorities said.

Louisiana State Police identified the victim as 25-year-old Claudia Williams of Orange.

Shortly before 10 p.m., Louisiana State Police Troop D responded to a multi-vehicle crash on I-10 approximately two miles east of the Texas state line in Calcasieu Parish.

The preliminary investigation revealed a Chevrolet Equinox driven by Williams was traveling west in the eastbound lanes of travel on I-10 at a high rate of speed.

At the same time, the driver of a Nissan Frontier was traveling east on I-10. The Nissan took evasive actions to avoid the crash but struck the trailer of an unidentified 18-wheeler that was traveling east.

After the impact with the 18-wheeler, the Nissan was sideswiped by the Chevrolet. The Chevrolet continued traveling west and struck a 2022 Kenworth 18-wheeler head-on.

Williams, who was unrestrained in the Chevrolet, sustained fatal injuries as a result of the crash and was pronounced dead at the scene, authorities said.

The drivers of the Nissan and 18-wheeler, who were properly restrained, sustained minor injuries and were taken to area hospitals for treatment.

Toxicology samples were obtained and will be submitted for analysis.

This crash remains under investigation.

Troop D in Louisiana has investigated four fatal crashes resulting in five deaths in 2022.