Credit: Wikimedia Commons

[Updated: Wed., June 7, 2023, 2:47 p.m.]

The Santa Barbara County Coroner’s Bureau has released the names of the three people killed in a major traffic crash on Highway 1 near Vandenberg Village early Tuesday morning.

Just before 6 a.m. on Tuesday, a 2008 Kia sedan — driven by a man and carrying two female passengers— was traveling southbound on the highway, according to the California Highway Patrol report. At the same time, a 2017 Chevrolet pickup truck was coming northbound just south of Constellation Road, driven by a 52-year-old man and carrying one 19-year-old woman in the passenger seat, when, “For undetermined reasons, the driver of the Kia allowed his vehicle to travel to the left, into the opposing lanes of traffic, directly into the path of the approaching Chevrolet.”

The Chevrolet pickup then collided into the left side of the Kia, killing all three occupants inside. 

CHP officers, Santa Barbara Sheriff’s deputies, and County Fire personnel arrived at the scene and determined all three people in the sedan had sustained fatal injuries. The two occupants of the Chevrolet truck were transported to Marian Regional Medical Center to be treated for minor injuries, according to CHP reports.

On Wednesday, Sheriff’s spokesperson Raquel Zick announced that the Coroner’s Bureau was releasing the identities of the three killed in the crash. They are Santa Maria residents Adelina Cortez Olea, 48; Zeferino Chavez Martinez, 47; and Rosalva Chavez Cortez, 18.

The incident is still under investigation, though CHP Officer Michael Griffith said that alcohol or drugs “do not appear to be a factor in this crash.”

Anyone with information regarding this traffic crash is encouraged to reach out to Officer Jack Hinojosa at the Buellton Area CHP Office at (805) 688-5551. 


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