2 Sunnyside men die when car plunges over guardrail

September 30, 2013 

— Two Sunnyside men died Sunday night when a pickup driver hit a rock on U.S. Highway 97 and veered into the car they were in, causing it to go over a guardrail and land in a creek, the Washington State Patrol reported.

Enrique Rodriguez, 48, and Miguel Diaz, 25, died at the scene about 20 miles north of Goldendale, according to a patrol news release.

The driver of the Dodge Ram pickup — 59-year-old William E. Seymour of Mount Vernon — and a passenger of the Chrysler PT Cruiser — 21-year-old Enrique Rodriguez Jr. of Sunnyside — were injured.

Seymour was taken to Oregon State Health Sciences University Hospital in Portland. Rodriguez Jr. was taken to Toppenish Community Hospital.

The elder Rodriguez was the driver of the PT Cruiser.

Troopers said the Dodge Ram was southbound about 9:15 p.m. when it hit a 50-pound rock in the southbound lane. The truck then crossed the centerline into the northbound lane, where it hit the oncoming car.

The truck fully rotated and came to rest in the northbound lane. The car hit the northbound guardrail and overturned down an embankment. It landed in a creek.

Troopers said they continued to investigate whether to seek charges. Intoxicants were not suspected. All occupants but Rodriguez Jr. were wearing seat belts.

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