Nine dead after New Mexico’s University of Southwest golf team crashes returning from Texas tournament

·2-min read
The scene of the crash on Tuesday night (USA Today)
The scene of the crash on Tuesday night (USA Today)

Nine people are dead after a bus belonging to the University of the Southwest (USW) crashed with members of its golf teams on board.

The mens and women’s USW golf teams were returning home from competitions at Midland College in west Texas when the accident happened late on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, the University told The Independent that there were nine people onboard the bus when it collided head-on with a Ford pickup truck nine miles from the city of Andrews, northwest of Midland-Odessa.

Nine people have been killed, including the USW coach and six students.

Two other students who who were taken to Lubbock, Texas, for medical treatment were thought to remain in a critical condition on Wednesday and the names of the eight victims have not been made public.

USW coach Tyler James has been confirmed among the victims.

“The USW campus community is shocked and saddened today as we mourn the loss of members of our university family,” said USW spokesperson Maria Duarte. “Last night, the men’s and women’s golf teams were traveling back to campus from competition in Midland, Texas, when their bus was struck by oncoming traffic.”

“Nine passengers, including the coach, were on the university bus involved in the fatal accident,” Ms Duarte added. “While the accident investigation is still underway, reports indicate that seven passengers aboard the bus were killed in the crash”.

The USW golf teams were due to return to Midland College on Wednesday as part of the two-day TankLogix Collegiate, according to the university’s athletic’s team. The two colleges are about 100 miles apart on either sides of the New Mexico and Texas border.

Texas Department of Public Safety Sgt Steven Blanco described the scene as “tragic” and said “there are deceased in that vehicle” at a press briefing on Tuesday night. An investigation is underway with USW cooperating.

Texas governor Greg Abott described the crash as “horrific” and said ”We grieve with the loved ones of the individuals whose lives were horrifically taken too soon in this fatal vehicle crash near Andrews last night”.

“The Texas Department of Public Safety is working closely with local officials to investigate this accident, and we offer our full support to the University of the Southwest and the state of New Mexico. I ask Texans to join Cecilia and me in praying for the families of those whose lives were lost and for the recovery of two critically injured students.”

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