NATIONAL NEWS

Head-on crash kills 6 and critically injures 3 on North Texas highway

Dec 27, 2023, 10:06 AM | Updated: 5:02 pm

CLEBURNE, Texas (AP) — A pickup truck slammed head-on into a minivan on a north Texas highway, killing six people and critically injuring three others, Texas authorities said Wednesday.

The deadly crash happened Tuesday near Cleburne, about 33 miles (53 kilometers) south of Fort Worth, according to the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office.

A preliminary investigation shows a southbound Silverado pickup truck driven by a 17-year-old from the nearby town of Glen Rose entered the northbound lanes in a no-passing zone and crashed head-on into a Honda Odyssey minivan, the sheriff’s office said.

The crash killed the driver of the minivan and five passengers.

The Texas Department of Public Safety identified the deceased driver as Rushil Barri, a 28-year-old man from Irving, Texas. Friends and relatives told local news outlets that Barri was driving his cousin and others home from a visit to a wildlife park.

“It’s so hard to take. He’s my half. He’s my half,” Rakesh Barri, Rushil Barri’s brother, told WFAA-TV.

The sole survivor in the minivan was 43-year-old Lokesh Potabathula, the cousin. Other fatalities included Pothabula’s wife, 36-year-old Naveena Potabathula; the couple’s children, 9-year-old Nishidha Potabathula and 10-year-old Krithik Potabathula; and Naveena Potabathula’s parents, 60-year-old Sitamahalakshmi Ponnada and 64-year-old Nageswararao Ponnada.

Members of the Telugu Association of North America said all the adults emigrated to the United States from India.

Lokesha Potabuthula and two 17-year-olds in the pickup truck — Luke Resecker and Preston Glass of Glen Rose — were taken to Fort Worth hospitals in critical condition.

It’s unclear if criminal charges will be filed.

“It’s a devastating scene and very emotional for all involved,” the sheriff’s office said in a post on its Facebook page.

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Head-on crash kills 6 and critically injures 3 on North Texas highway