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Police: 2 Dead After Jeep Strikes Riding Lawn Mower In Delaware

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WILMINGTON MANOR, Del. (CBS) – Investigators say two people are dead after a man riding a lawn mower was struck by a vehicle in New Castle County Tuesday afternoon.

The crash was reported around 1:48 p.m. on North Dupont Highway (U.S. 13).

According to Delaware State Police, an initial investigation indicates a 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee was traveling northbound on North Dupont Highway, north of School Lane, in the center lane. Police say the Jeep entered the left lane, striking a 2008 Infiniti sport utility vehicle, and then returned to its lane. The Jeep continued north and then entered the right lane, striking a 2012 Ford Escape, according to police.

Police say the Jeep continued traveling north and, after passing under Del. 141, traveled over a concrete median separating the northbound lanes of North Dupont Highway and a merging lane from Del. 141.

According to police, the Jeep then traveled over a raised curb, onto a grassy area and struck a light pole. Police say the Jeep continued north on the grass, striking a riding lawn mower, crossing over the entrance to Wilmington University, and ultimately coming to rest in the grass.

The operator of the riding lawn mower, identified by police as 20-year-old Francisco Jimenez-Flores, of Wilmington, was ejected from the lawn mower. He was taken to Christiana Hospital in critical condition, and was later pronounced dead.

The driver of the Jeep, identified by police as 25-year-old Derek Wynn, of New Castle, was also taken from the scene to Christiana Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Investigators have not determined if he died as a result of injuries sustained in the crash, or from a sudden-onset medical condition that may have caused his erratic driving. It is not known if he was properly restrained at the time of the crash.

The 52-year-old driver of the Infiniti was taken to Christiana Hospital, where she was treated for a minor injury and released.

The driver of the Ford was not injured.

There were lane closures on northbound North Dupont Highway for about two hours as troopers investigated and cleared the crash.

The Collision Reconstruction Unit is continuing its investigation.

 

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