A head-on collision on Calle Real at Mendocino Drive in Goleta resulted in the death of two local teenagers on Wednesday and a DUI charge.
According to a press release, the crash occurred at approximately 11:30 p.m. when a BMW traveling westbound on Calle Real attempted to pass a white vehicle by changing into a lane of oncoming traffic. The BMW then collided with an eastbound-traveling SUV carrying three passengers. Both vehicles sustained major damage and the SUV caught fire. Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Dept. spokesman Sgt. Erik Raney said that although this is the most likely scenario, it is heavily based on a witness report.
“We have a witness account,” Raney said. “What we do know is the BMW was traveling westbound, there was an eastbound SUV and they crashed right in the middle of the road.”
The Santa Barbara County Fire Dept. and paramedics responded to the scene after nearby residents called 9-1-1, according to a press release. All four victims were transported by ambulance to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. Despite the hospital staff’s efforts, Juan Alvarez, 19, a passenger in the SUV, and David Ramirez, 18, the driver of the BMW, were pronounced dead. The SUV’s two other occupants remain at Cottage Hospital in serious but stable condition.
Though the BMW driver’s entrance into the eastbound lane may have initiated the crash, Raney said Anna Alvarez, 29, sister of Juan Alvarez and the driver of the SUV, was charged with a DUI after tests found she was intoxicated at the time of the incident.
The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Major Accident Response Team is conducting further investigation to determine the speed at which the vehicles were traveling and additional factors that may have contributed to the collision. Investigators are looking for more information, and in particular want to speak with the driver of the white vehicle. For persons with information regarding the crash, contact Sgt. Greg Nordyke at (805) 681-4100.