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Update: Woman killed in head-on collision near 21st and Memorial identified; two others remain hospitalized

Update: Woman killed in head-on collision near 21st and Memorial identified; two others remain hospitalized

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Update: The victim of this crash has been identified as Linda Dilley, according to police. A friend said she was 52 years old; police could not confirm her age.

The other persons involved in this crash remained hospitalized and unidentified Friday. 

A woman died likely immediately in a violent head-on collision in east Tulsa on Wednesday, police said, and the man they say lost control of the vehicle that crashed into her at about 90 mph on a city street is expected to be OK.

From the wreckage left behind, one would think no one could have survived.

“I’ve been doing this for a long time,” Tulsa Police Traffic Sgt. Brian Collum said. “I’ve never seen an engine thrown that far.”

The sound of the impact about 11:30 a.m. wrenched nearby residents from their homes and drew a small crowd to the front of a tire shop along 21st Street just west of Memorial Drive.

Car parts created a debris field scattered throughout the road’s four lanes, including the engine of the speeding car, which sat about four car-lengths from where its auto body came to rest.

“I don’t know that she could have reacted at those speeds,” Collum said of the deceased driver.

None of the individuals involved in the crash have been identified, and none were wearing their seatbelts, Collum said. The driver of the speeding car, along with his female passenger, was hospitalized with significant injuries. Both are expected to live.

The man reportedly told police he didn’t remember the crash.

Through witness statements, surveillance footage and evaluation of the scene, police determined that the man was driving west at at least 90 mph when he lost control of his vehicle and likely over-corrected into the eastbound lanes, colliding with the SUV and killing its driver.

Investigators don’t yet know why he was speeding — the legal limit on the stretch is 40 mph — but they said they plan to interview him again.

Officers and other responders at the scene held tarps to prevent onlookers, many of them children, from watching as firefighters extricated the woman’s body from her car.

“We’re pretty sure it was immediate,” Collum said of the woman’s death.

Angie Pitts said she found herself stuck in the tire shop parking lot with her four grandchildren as police processed the cordoned-off scene. The kids range in age from 10-13, but Pitts said she was glad they happened to see the horror.

“This is teaching them,” the grandmother said before rattling off a deluge of driving safety rules, emphasizing the dire need to follow them.

“If you don’t, it could cost you.”


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