AURORA | A pair of car crashes left two people dead in the city early Saturday morning, bringing the city’s annual number of traffic crashes to the highest total on record.
Police said that the driver of a Nissan sedan ran a red light while traveling north on Airport Boulevard at about midnight on Nov. 27 and subsequently collided with a Ford SUV traveling west on East Sixth Avenue.
A female passenger in the Nissan was pronounced dead at the scene, and the male driver broke a leg. The driver of the Ford was not injured.
Traffic investigators believe the driver of the Nissan was intoxicated at the time of the crash. He will likely be criminally charged in relation to the incident upon being discharged from a local hospital, police said.
About six hours later in the northern portion of the city, police said that another woman died after her car collided with the sign of a motel on East Colfax Avenue.
Lt. Chris Amsler, spokesperson for the Aurora Police Department, said that investigators found a wrecked Dodge Ram truck resting against a tree in the 11800 block of East Colfax at 6:25 a.m. Nov. 27.
The woman who was driving the truck was declared dead at the scene, and another female passenger was taken to a hospital in “critical condition.”
Authorities have determined that the driver of the truck was speeding along Colfax when she struck the center median, the sign of the Timberline Motel and then a tree.
No other cars were involved in the Colfax collision.
The Arapahoe County Coroner’s Office has been tasked with formally identifying the two women who died in the recent crashes.
The pair of fatal collisions marked the 38th and 39th traffic deaths in the city so far this year, pushing the city’s annual total past last year’s record.
There were 36 traffic deaths on Aurora roadways in 2020, making the year the deadliest in terms of traffic fatalities in the city in modern history, according to Aurora Police Department data. The total marked a three-fold increase over annual figures reported a decade ago.
Colorado State Patrol announced last week that troopers will increase traffic enforcement through the end of the year in an effort to curb deadly crashes across the state.
Colorado is on pace for its deadliest year in terms of traffic fatalities in about two decades, with nearly 600 deaths already reported in 2021.