DPS: Speed caused crash; driver is a minor

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THE Department of Public Safety has confirmed that speed caused the auto collision that claimed the life of Sergio Apostol, 62, DPS spokesman Dre Pangelinan said.

Traffic investigators are finalizing the investigation and will be consulting with the Attorney General’s Office on the next approach to the legal process of this case,” he added.

Pangelinan said DPS is unable to release the name of the driver because she is a juvenile.

On the evening of Dec. 16, 2019, Apostol was driving a green Nissan Sentra that turned left into the Puerto Rico Shell gas station when a northbound beige/gold 2015 Toyota Highlander slammed into his sedan.

A construction worker, Apostol sustained life-threatening injuries and was brought to the hospital. After three days in the intensive care unit, he was pronounced dead following a cardiac arrest.

He was originally from Antique province in the central Philippines and had been on Saipan for more than 30 years.

DPS said it received a 911 call reporting the auto collision in Puerto Rico at 7:55 p.m. on Dec. 16, 2019.

Due to the severity of the crash, DPS said traffic investigators were dispatched to the scene.

At the scene, DPS said police observed two stationary vehicles and a damaged power pole. The first vehicle, a green 1995 Nissan Sentra had extensive damage and was resting between the northbound and southbound inner lanes. The second vehicle was a beige/gold 2015 Toyota Highlander with extensive damage to its front end.

All occupants were transferred to the Commonwealth Health Center for treatment.

DPS said the scene was documented and processed. At CHC, police learned that the two female occupants of the Toyota Highlander sustained minor injuries, received treatment, and were released. However, the sole occupant of the Nissan Sentra sustained life-threatening injuries and was admitted to the intensive care unit.

Apostol is the CNMI’s second traffic fatality in 2019. The first was Aurelio Prado, 74, who died after he was hit by a car while he was crossing the road near the Dandan traffic intersection on the evening of Jan. 4, 2019.

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