Car wash raises money for I-10 crash victims

A car wash was held in Phoenix on Sunday to raise money to pay for funeral expenses for a family of seven killed in a crash last Sunday on I-10 outside Phoenix.

The Maricopa County Medical Examiner's Office identified the victims as Lanna Flood, 51, Tara Ferris, 32, Tylor Joe Harper, 16, Tori Sanchez, 13, Jullian Flores, 12, Damion Cuadras, 11, and Dominic Cuadras, 10.

Flood, her daughter Ferris and Ferris' four children were from Parker, AZ and members of the Colorado River Indian Tribes. Sanchez is Ferris' nephew.  Sunday's car wash was at O'Reilly Auto Parts on 3302 E. McDowell Rd.

The family was heading to Phoenix last Sunday to shop for back-to-school supplies, but their trip ended tragically when their mini-van burst into flames after being hit by a semi-truck that crossed the median.  Authorities said that they have yet to determine what caused Sunday's fatal crash, but there is reason to believe that Jose Mireles, the driver of the semi, may have had some kind of medical condition that contributed to the accident.

DPS officers said the semi-trailer was fully loaded with up to 80,000 pounds of soda and was traveling about 75 mph when it hit the van head-on.  The impact pushed both vehicles into a culvert on the shoulder of the highway, where they caught fire.

There have been so many accidents and deaths on Arizona’s highways—especially Interstate 10, due to crossover collisions.  The State of Arizona has to date refused to acknowledge and/or admit that median barriers are seriously needed for the I-10.  Despite the fact that the State knows that median barriers are 95% EFFECTIVE in preventing these crossover events from occurring, the State simply wants to keep it’s head in the sand.

 How many more people have to die, unnecessarily, because our State wants to ignore the problem?  The State Treasurer has recently released his report, telling us how much money Arizona has in it’s coffers, and, in this economy, it is impressive.  Yet, for a relatively minimal cost (less than $100,000 per highway mile), the State could provide median barriers to protect innocent travelers on Arizona’s highways. 
          We do know one thing:  Ignoring the problem is not the answer.