One dead, six injured in head-on collision in Touchet

By on Tuesday, November 14th, 2023 in Columbia Basin News More Top Stories

TOUCHET – The driver of a passenger van was killed and six others were injured following a head-on collision just before 9 p.m. Monday. The Washington State Patrol said the van was traveling eastbound on U.S. 12 at Oasis Road, about six miles east of Wallula Junction.

The van struck a pickup driven by Esmeralda Diaz-Ramos, 22, of Walla Walla as the van attempted to pass another vehicle. Diaz-Ramos and her passenger, a two-year-old boy, were injured. Also injured were the van’s three passengers which troopers said were from Colombia and Venezuela.

A third vehicle struck Diaz-Ramos’ pickup, but the driver was not injured.

All of the injured were taken to Kadlec Regional Medical Center.

The driver of the van, Leno Quintero Hernandez, 28, died at the scene. WSP said the city he is from is unknown.

The crash is under investigation and troopers said it’s unknown if drugs or alcohol were involved.