New information has come to light in a Texas highway collision case that left several people dead — a 13-year-old was operating the pickup truck.
On Tuesday, a pickup truck crashed into a van full of students in Andrews County, Texas. The head-on collision killed seven people in the van, including a golf coach, and injured several others.
During a news conference on Thursday, Bruce Landsberg, Vice Chairman of the NTSB, revealed that 13-year-old Ricky Siemens was behind the wheel while his 38-year-old father, Heinrich Siemens, accompanied him in the passenger of his 2007 Dodge 2500 pickup truck. Both died on impact.
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“It appears, at this point in the investigation, that the left front tire, which was a spare tire, had failed, which resulted in the vehicle pulling hard to the left and crossing into the opposing lane,” Landsberg said.
The maximum speed on the highway is 75 miles per hour (or 120 kilometres per hour), and the NTSB said the driver was speeding. It is unclear what speed the truck was going.
According to Texas law, a 13-year-old cannot legally drive.
Two Canadian students were critically injured in the crash but are reportedly now in stable condition. Hayden Underhill and Dayton Price, from Ontario, were taken from the site to a hospital via helicopter.
A GoFundMe was set up by Price’s brother and has surpassed $125,000. The goal of the fundraiser is $200,000