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Charges filed in Carson City crash that killed 2, hurt 9

November 12, 2021 GMT

CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) — The Nevada Highway Patrol has arrested the driver of a pickup that was towing an overweight boat down a steep mountain highway when he lost control and crashed into more than a half-dozen vehicles, killing two people and injuring nine others in Carson City.

Investigators suspect the brakes failed on the Ford F-350 that 25-year-old Roney Gonzalez-Otazo was driving eastbound on U.S. Highway 50 Tuesday from Spooner Summit at Lake Tahoe when he failed to stop at a red light at South Carson Street and caused the eight-car crash.

He’s been charged with reckless driving, operating an unsafe vehicle, failure to obey a stoplight and driving without a license, Nevada Highway Patrol spokesman Charles Caster said.

It wasn’t clear if he has a lawyer or will be appointed one.

The victims were identified as a Dayton couple, Don Powell, 74, and Tana Powell, 70.

Caster told the Reno Gazette Journal Gonzalez-Otazo’s brakes likely overheated and failed. The boat disconnect from the Ford in the collision and rolled a quarter-mile down the freeway before stopping.

“It was overweight. This boat was a five-axle trailer that weighed about 38,000 pounds (17,236 kilograms) and there was no reason for this trailer to be on the road,” Caster said. “We’re suspecting brake failure.”