OAK HILL, Florida -- The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a traffic accident where a pickup truck carrying four teenage passengers -- including two cousins -- crashed into a ditch in Oak Hill last night. The crash left one passenger dead and two others hospitalized with serious injuries.
The single-vehicle crash occurred shortly before 9 p.m. in the 200-block of West Halifax Avenue near its intersection with Elleanore Street. The truck, a 2005 Dodge Dakota, was traveling westbound on West Halifax Avenue when it crossed over the railroad tracks and became airborne.
Investigators believe that the driver, 17-year-old Austen Goodrich, lost control of the vehicle when it hit the pavement and skidded sideways into the ditch. The vehicle came to a rest on its side, blocking the eastbound lane of travel. The other three occupants were Goodrich’s cousin, 16-year-old Cody Goodrich, along with 15-year-old Breanna Wilson and 18-year-old Cheyenne Ellis.
Cody Goodrich was pronounced dead at the scene. Austen Goodrich and Wilson were transported to Halifax Health Medical Center in Daytona Beach, Florida. Wilson was listed in critical condition and Goodrich was also in intensive care, listed in stable condition. VCSO Public Information Officer Gary Davidson said in a release that Ellis, the only passenger who was wearing a seat belt, suffered minor injuries that did not require hospitalization.
Investigators say that several open containers of alcohol were found in the vehicle, and the Sheriff’s Office is investigating to determine whether alcohol or excessive speed were factors in the crash.