Air Support Copter 3 circled above Gibraltar Road around 9:30 Monday night as fire crews and Search & Rescue responded to a “vehicle over the side” that resulted in two deaths, said County Fire Captain Dave Zaniboni. Five young people had been driving down Gibraltar just south of East Camino Cielo, according to CHP, when the driver of the 2005 Volkswagen Passat lost control, sending the car over the edge where it flipped several times before landing about 300 feet below the road.
The helicopter hoisted one occupant with major injuries out of the wreckage and to Cottage Hospital with the assistance of firefighters and the Search and Rescue team, who worked to bring the others up to the roadside. Two were taken by ambulance to Cottage with moderate and minor injuries. The driver, Brandon Woodward, 19, of Ventura, was arrested for suspicion of DUI at the scene. Another passenger is an unidentified 16-year-old Ventura woman, and the third passenger is Dalton Murrieta, also 19 years old of Ventura. The identity of the deceased will be released after their families have been notified.
[UPDATE] Newly released information from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office states the two deceased persons were young women from Ventura: Lily Afton Brennan, 17, and Lesli Michael Sandoval Nunez, 19. Fire and Search & Rescue personnel worked through the night to retrieve their bodies.
After rescuers initially reached the vehicle, Woodward and the 16-year-old woman were taken by Calstar and Copter 3 choppers to Cottage Hospital in critical condition. Murrieta was taken by ambulance to Cottage with minor injuries.