By Carlos Padilla
Three members of a family were transported to area hospitals following a violent collision between a small sports car and a fifth-wheel Thursday afternoon, May 10. The three injured were in the smaller vehicle, while the driver of the full-size pickup pulling the fifth-wheel escaped injury.
The crash caused State Highway 51 to be shut down to traffic for approximately two hours, with traffic diverted to adjacent residential roadways.
Those involved in the crash and an eyewitness who was driving behind the fifth-wheel stated that the white Mitsubishi Eclipse was traveling from the direction of Elephant Butte Lake southwest towards Truth or Consequences when the crash occurred.
The driver of the Eclipse, 21-year-old Gabby Borunda of Truth or Consequences, reportedly crossed the dividing line on the two-lane highway in eastern Truth or Consequences near the intersection of Rainbow Road, and into the path of a truck driven by 58-year-old Leroy Fuller of Truth or Consequences.
Mr. Fuller, who was traveling toward Elephant Butte Lake, towing a 2010 fifth-wheel, drove onto the shoulder in an attempt to avoid a collision with the sports car. The evasive action somewhat worked; the Eclipse missed Mr. Fuller’s pickup, however, it struck near the front of the fifth-wheel with violent force. The impact point was more than five feet over the center divide line, according to the Truth or Consequences Police Department.