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Two dead in Montezuma County crash

Car spun out, struck on-coming vehicle

Two people are dead after a head-on collision in Montezuma County Saturday night on County Road G, also known as McElmo Canyon Road. Authorities believe speed and alcohol are contributing factors in the accident.

Emergency crews responded to the incident about 5:30 p.m. Saturday after the crash was reported by witnesses that arrived on the scene.

A 2006 Chrysler Pacifica was traveling westbound on Road G, and a 2012 Nissan Sentra was traveling east. The Pacifica, carrying three occupants and driven by Janeen Black, 26, of Ignacio, lost control and spun into the oncoming Sentra, also carrying three occupants and driven by Yvonne Padilla, 40, of Cortez, according to a report by the Colorado State Patrol.

Black was transported to Southwest Memorial Hospital. Padilla and passenger Gerald Padilla, 36 of Cortez, were pronounced dead at the scene. The third passenger, a 19-year-old woman, was transported to Southwest Memorial with serious injuries.

Authorities are investigating, and charges are pending.

Sgt. Rob Madden of the CSP said the accident occurred in a remote location and may have been on Ute Mountain Ute tribal land.

“It (was) a ways out there,” he said at 7:15 p.m. Saturday.

Madden said when authorities arrived, one vehicle was already largely incinerated.

In Durango and La Plata County on Saturday night, authorities were busy responding to at least five minor accidents, two of those in northern parts of the county, one involving three cars near Durango Mountain Resort that blocked traffic for a short time as road conditions deteriorated on U.S. Highway 550, and another vehicle had rolled over in a separate incident. No injuries were reported.

Sleet and snow affected visibility and created slick driving conditions.

“It’s the first snowfall of the year,” said Durango Police Department Sgt. R. Brammer. DPD responded to incidents at 15th Street and Main Avenue, College Drive and Camino del Rio and on East Eighth Avenue all within an hour of each other.


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