Officials: Unsecured furniture cause of triple fatal accident

A piece of furniture falling off a pickup on Highway 395 is being blamed for an accident that killed three people in Reno on Tuesday evening.

According to the Nevada Highway Patrol, the pickup was southbound on Highway 395 in Reno near the Glendale Avenue interchange when the piece fell out the bed and into the travel lane.

A 19-year-old Reno woman driving a white sedan behind the pickup either swerved to miss the furniture or struck it and then swerved to the left and rolled over the center divider into oncoming traffic.

The sedan was sliding on its roof in the far left lane of the freeway into the path of a Toyota 4 Runner SUV occupied by a mother and her baby son. The two vehicles collided head-on.

The driver of the sedan had to be cut from the wreckage by Reno firefighters. Her three passengers died at the scene, according to Trooper Chuck Allen of the Nevada Highway Patrol.

The sedan's driver was taken to Renown Regional Medical Center and is currently in the Intensive care unit.

The driver of the 4 Runner was also transported from the scene for moderate injuries and her son was properly restrained in a car seat and escaped injury. Allen said the driver of the pickup stopped just south of the crash scene and provided troopers with information.

Allen said that once NHP's Major Accident Investigation Team completes their investigation, they will forward their recommendations for any charges to the Washoe County District Attorney's Office for review.

The highway's northbound lanes reopened around 10:25 pm. Southbound lanes were closed for about 25 minutes between 8:20 and 8:45 pm. Witnesses or anyone with additional information are urged call Trooper Eric Gallagher at (775) 689-4661 regarding case No. NHP-0908041601.


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