A Distracted Driver Died After Running Into the Welcome to Killeen Sign
A young life was lost early Friday morning in a rollover crash along I-14 in Killeen.
Killeen Police Department spokeswoman Ofelia Miramontez reports the single-vehicle crash occurred shortly before 3:58 AM. Police responded to the location of the Welcome to Killeen sign on westbound I-14 after receiving a 9-1-1 call about a major crash.
When officers arrived, they found a white sedan flipped upside down and on fire.
According to police, a preliminary investigation revealed that the 18-year-old woman driving the sedan was distracted by her phone while driving west along I-14.
"The driver failed to maintain a single marked lane, leaving the roadway while sliding sideways," Miramontez reports. "The vehicle’s wheels began to dig into the wet ground, eventually causing the vehicle to roll to the driver’s side and striking the “Welcome to Killeen” sign and landscape."
Sadly, the driver passed away at the scene as a result of her injuries. She was pronounced dead at 5:26 AM by Justice of the Peace Bill Cooke.
The name of the driver was being withheld late Friday morning until her next of kin could be notified and briefed on what happened. Miramontez said the driver was the only person in the vehicle at the time of the crash, and that Killeen PD's investigation is still ongoing.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to the family of the young woman whose life was cut short this morning. Every life is precious, but it's such a tragedy to see someone with an entire lifetime ahead of them lost because of a simple mistake so many of us make without thinking.
TxDOT recently released a reminder of just how destructive distracted driving is. It prompted us to ask our listeners to do this: take a moment to think about the last text message you received. Now, imagine you got that message while driving. Would that message have been worth losing your life over?
These days, we're all trying to do so much at once, even when we're on the move. Because of our phones, we're always logged in and connected. Please, give yourself time to get where you're going safely when you're driving. Whatever's going on can wait until you get to your destination or find a safe place to pull over.
Please be safe out there, Central Texas.