One dead after fatal crash in Lea County

Created: 08/29/2014 11:20 AM
By: Kristen Garcia,

Officers from the New Mexico Motor Transportation Police Division and New Mexico State Police responded to a two vehicle crash early Thursday morning in Lea County at the intersection of State Road 529 and County Road 126.

According to State Police a Freightliner Commercial Motor Vehicle driven by Manuel Ornelas, 59, was traveling westbound when a Ford pick-up traveling southbound, failed to stop at the posted stop sign. The driver of the pick-up Randy Ballard, 55, crashed into the right side axle of Ornela’s vehicle.

Ornelas’ semi veered off the south shoulder and jack- knifed. Ballard’s pick-up veered off onto the shoulder.

Ballard was pronounced dead on the scene. Ornelas was not injured.

Police say alcohol and seatbelts were not contributing factors in the crash.   

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