Two die in accident on U.S. 40 |

Two die in accident on U.S. 40

Head-on collision closes highway Thursday afternoon

Alexis DeLaCruz
Debris is scattered across U.S. Highway 40, near Hayden, following Thursday's fatal accident that killed two men.
Hans Hallgren

— Two men died in an accident on U.S. Highway 40 west of Hayden on Thursday afternoon.

Colorado State Patrol Sgt. Chad Dunlap said a 36-year-old Craig man and a 26-year-old Delaware man were killed when their cars collided head-on near Yampa River State Park.

Dunlap said two passengers in the vehicle driven by the Craig man – a woman and a young girl – were transported to Yampa Valley Medical Center with moderate, non-life-threatening injuries. The Delaware man was driving alone.

Names of the deceased were not released pending notification of their families.

Dunlap said the Craig man’s white Chrysler sedan was traveling westbound on U.S. 40 when it crossed into the eastbound lane and struck an oncoming red Ford Focus driven by the Delaware man.

Witnesses said the driver of the Ford Focus did not have any time to avoid the Chrysler before being struck, Dunlap said.

“It was instantaneous,” he said.

All four people involved were wearing seat belts. No other vehicles were involved, Dunlap said. There was no evidence of drugs, alcohol or excessive speed as factors in the crash.

U.S. 40 was closed in both directions immediately after the crash, which was first called in at 1:58 p.m.

The Colorado State Patrol and Routt County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene, near mile marker 105. Dunlap said the accident remains under investigation. Criminal charges won’t be filed.

Colorado Department of Transportation and Colorado State Parks workers also responded to the accident.