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Three identified in deadly weekend crashes

Posted: 12:32 AM, Jul 29, 2018
Updated: 2018-07-31 18:49:53-04

Four deaths. Three separate crashes. One thing in common: no one had seatbelts on. 

According to a local traffic expert, you are four times as likely to die if you skip this simple step every time you hit the road. 

First, around 11:15 Friday night, two people were killed after the driver attempted to make a lane change and lost control of the vehicle on Interstate 15 near the state line. A man and a woman were killed, both did not have their seatbelts on. They were identified as 28-year-old Anthony Garcia and 19-year-old Karisma Angelise Avila. Garcia was from Los Angeles. 

Around midnight Saturday, a driver was killed after crashing his truck into a pole near Washington and Linn. That driver did not have his seatbelt on and may have been under the influence. 

Finally, just before 5 a.m. Saturday, a man died after rolling over his truck on the Summerlin Parkway  and hitting a concrete wall near Buffalo Drive. He was identified as 60-year-old Arthur Gomez. 

Las Vegas police says the driver was not wearing a seatbelt and was thrown from the truck.

"You don't get ejected from the vehicle if you were wearing your seatbelt," says Erin Breen, UNLV's Vulnerable Road Users Project. 

Breen says in comparison to this time in 2017, traffic related fatalities are down but motor vehicle occupant deaths are up.

She says it's time for change, starting with stricter seatbelt laws.

"They can pull you over if you're missing your front light, they can pull you over for something hanging from your rearview mirror or a cracked tail light but none of those things are going to cause you to lose your life in a crash."

Breen says in the case of this deadly weekend on the roads, fastening a seatbelt is a two second habit that could mean the difference between life and death.

“When you think about people needlessly losing their lives just because they're not wearing your seatbelt, it's time for Nevada to step up and make that a priority enforcement."