Texas Department of Public Safety troopers are still investigating a head-on accident that killed a New Braunfels man and injured a Canyon Lake man more than a week ago.

Sgt. Orlando “Gus” Moreno, safety and education public information officer based at the DPS office in San Antonio, said troopers arrived to the accident scene, in the 8100 block of Farm-to-Market Road 306 between Purgatory Road and River Trace Drive, around 8:30 a.m. on May 12.

“A 2015 Chevrolet pickup, driven by Charles West, 63, of New Braunfels, was traveling north on FM 306 during wet, rainy conditions,” Moreno said on Tuesday. “Mr. West failed to negotiate a curve in the road and his vehicle veered into the northbound lane, where it struck a 2018 Chevrolet pickup, traveling south, head-on.”

Jennifer Smith, Comal County Sheriff’s Office public information officer, said Precinct 3 Justice of the Peace Mike Rust pronounced West dead at the scene. Moreno said the other driver, Stephen Litchfield, 59, of Canyon Lake, was transported by ground EMS to Ascension Seton Hays Hospital in Kyle with serious injuries. 

“The investigation is ongoing and all the contributing factors are still unknown,” he said.

Canyon Lake Fire & EMS Chief Darren Brinkkoeter said his responders joined DPS and CCSO deputies at the accident scene, where Litchfield had to be extricated from his vehicle.

“It took us a while for us to clear the scene; we were there until 10:35 a.m.,” Brinkkoeter said. “An assessment was done on the (deceased) patient; the other was trapped in his vehicle. Crews extricated the patient from the second vehicle and transported him to the hospital.”

Moreno said the DPS reminds all drivers to abide by traffic laws, minimize distractions, control speed and drive cautiously during adverse weather conditions. 

“This is preliminary information that is subject to change,” he said, adding the crash report will be available at Texas.gov after completion of the investigation.

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