SOMERS POINT, N.J. (CBS) – A South Jersey bar crowded with nearly 100 customers was the scene of a fatal car crash early Thursday morning in Atlantic County.

Police say one person is dead and two others were seriously injured when a driver traveling a high rate of speed, lost control of his car, struck a utility pole and crashed into the front of Gregory’s Bar along Shore Road.

The accident happened at about 1 a.m. while Gregory’s was observing $1 beer night and the facility was crowded with customers.
Police say Antonio Vargas, 21, of Somers Point, was behind the wheel. He suffered life-threatening injuries and was flown Harrah’s Regional Trauma Center at AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center.

Vargas’ passenger, Kevin Botta, 33, also of Somers Point, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police say Joseph Higbee, 26, of Northfield, was standing outside the bar when the crash happened and was struck by a fire hydrant that was dislodged on impact. He also suffered life-threatening injuries and was transported to the same hospital as Vargas.

The accident also caused a power outage over a one block area.

Authorities say the crash remains under investigation.

Anyone with information about the crash to contact the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office Fatal Collision Unit at 609-909-7666 or the Somers Point Police Department at 609-927-6161.

Reported by Al Novack, KYW Newsradio and Dray Clark, CBS-3

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