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One dead and one missing in West Baton Rouge Parish crash

Lobdell – Shortly before 9:30 pm on May 17th, 2021, Troopers from Louisiana State Police Troop A began investigating a single vehicle fatal crash on LA Hwy 415 north of Interstate 10 in West Baton Rouge Parish. The crash took the life of 40-year-old Alvarado Morentes Hermelindo of Port Allen and has resulted in the search of an unidentified passenger.

The initial investigation revealed the crash occurred as an unidentified driver and his two passengers were traveling southbound on LA Hwy 415 in a 2012 Toyota Venza. For reasons still under investigation, the Toyota exited the roadway to the right and proceeded into a canal bordering the roadway.  After entering the canal, the Toyota became submerged.

Hermelindo sustained fatal injuries as a result of the crash and was pronounced deceased on the scene. The unidentified passenger has yet to be located and a search is ongoing. The remaining passenger sustained minor injuries and received medical treatment on the scene. This crash remains under investigation.

Troopers urge motorists to use caution when traveling during the next 24 hours especially after sunset.  Water can rise quickly resulting in flash flooding of roadways.  If you approach a roadway that is under water, Troopers recommend you do not travel through it.

Louisiana State Police is urging the people of South Louisiana to exercise caution during the coming hours as we prepare for continued rain. According to the National Weather Service, there is a moderate risk of excessive rainfall across much of the central and south Louisiana until 0700 hours Wednesday. This may lead to rivers cresting above flood stage, resulting in flooding along state and local roadways.

Additional safety tips include:

Stay Put- Avoid driving in heavy storms unless absolutely necessary.  Often, injuries and deaths occur during and in the aftermath of such storms. Sightseers impeding roadways cause obstacles for emergency personnel responding to those in need.

Slow Down– Decrease your vehicle speed during inclement weather to avoid hydroplaning and to account for increased stopping time.  Periods of heavy rain may necessitate traveling at speeds below the posted speed limits.

Be cautious of high winds – Windy conditions adversely affect all vehicles, particularly high profile vehicles, such as buses and trucks, as well as smaller vehicles such as motorcycles. Gusty wind makes driving difficult, especially when it is rapidly changing in speed and direction.

Do not drive around any barricades- If you approach a road closed barricade do not attempt to proceed with your route even if you think it may be safe.