Home News Local News Two fatal crashes in Lea County

Two fatal crashes in Lea County

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The New Mexico State Police is investigating a fatal crash that occurred around 6 a.m. Wednesday on U.S. 62/180 and State Road 483 (Arkansas Junction) west of Hobbs.

The initial investigation indicated a 2004 Chrysler was traveling east on U.S. 62/180 and attempted to make a left turn onto the Arkansas Junction. The Chrysler failed to yield to oncoming west bound traffic and turned in front of a 1991 Subaru, according to the crash report. The driver of the Subaru attempted to avoid the crash but was unable to, and collided with the Chrysler.

The driver of the Chrysler, Michael Taggert, 37, of Casper, Wyoming, sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the Subaru was treated for minor injuries on scene.

Alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the crash and it appears seat belt were not properly used. The driver of the Subaru is not facing charges and the driver’s identity will not be released. No additional information is available at this time.

On Monday, NMSP say a 44-year-old Hobbs man died around 8 a.m. in a two-vehicle crash in Hobbs.

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Ector Diaz was pronounced dead at an area hospital.

The initial investigation by the NMSP indicated a 2013 Ford F-550 driven by Diaz was traveling north on West County Road. For unknown reasons, the Ford crossed the center line into the southbound lanes of West County Road.

The Ford sideswiped a Kenworth truck that was traveling south, and the impact caused both vehicles to overturn. The driver of the Kenworth was transported to an area hospital for injuries not believed to be life-threatening.

Alcohol is not believed to be a factor in this crash. No additional information is available at this time.