GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - Two people died, two others were injured and a fifth fled the scene after two vehicles collided on a highway in Grand Rapids.
The two people who were killed in the crash were identified as Julien Alexander Tirado and Kevin Singnoy Boonheaun, both 17-year-olds from Holland, according to Michigan State Police.
The wreck happened just after midnight Monday on westbound I-196 between Lake Michigan Drive and Market Avenue. The highway was closed for about four hours as authorities investigated and cleared the scene.
Tirado, who was driving a Honda car, was speeding as he tried to pass another vehicle, according to MSP. He lost control, causing the Honda to hit the guardrail on the right shoulder.
The Honda came to rest in the left lane of the highway.
Ken Zemeskas, whose vehicle was being passed, told 24 Hour News 8 he saw smoke coming from the crashed Honda, so he slowed down, stopped on the shoulder at a safe distance from the Honda, put on his van's hazard lights to warn other drivers and called 911.
Zemeskas then saw a pickup truck come around the bend and crash into the Honda. Police said the pickup truck driver had moved into the left lane to give Zemeskas' vehicle room on the shoulder. Zemeskas said he doesn't think the pickup driver swerved to miss his vehicle because he was at a safe distance off the road.
The pickup driver told 24 Hour News 8 he didn't see the Honda in the middle of the left lane until it was too late because the Honda had its lights off due to the original collision into the guardrail.
There were four people in the Honda. Tirado and Boonheaun died. A third passenger was treated for injuries. A fourth fled the scene and police continue to work to learn this person's identity. Judging by the condition of the Honda, it's likely he or she was injured.
The pickup driver said he didn't see any of the surviving victims inside the Honda when he reached it, suggesting they had been thrown from the vehicle during the initial crash.
The driver of the pickup was treated for injuries at a hospital and released.
Police have not released the names of the other victims.
The State has no record of Tirado ever having a driver's license. Court records show he also had two alcohol-related minor in possession charges from August 2012 and April 2013, and a count of driving without a valid license from September 2013.
Any witnesses to the incident are asked to call Michigan State Police at 616.866.4411.
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