Woman thrown from truck and killed in collision

Firefighters treat the victim of a multi-vehicle crash that distupted traffic on Twentynine Palms Highway and Senilis Avenue in Morongo Valley Thursday afternoon, Aug. 1.

MORONGO VALLEY — Tracy Ostman, a 57-year-old Yucca Valley woman, died from injuries she suffered in a collision on Twentynine Palms Highway at Senilis Avenue Thursday.

Ostman was driving a gray 2005 Ford Ranger eastbound on the highway about 12:57 p.m. when she rear-ended a teal 1994 Ford Ranger whose driver, 43-year-old Charles Coulter, of Morongo Valley, was slowing to turn right onto Senilis, according to the CHP.

The impact pushed Coulter’s Ranger onto Senilis Avenue, where it hit a 2006 Dodge Ram driven by 35-year-old Justin Houk, of Morongo Valley.

Ostman’s gray Ranger continued moving west and rolled over several times before it ended up on its side. 

She was not wearing a seatbelt and was thrown from the vehicle, the CHP reported.

After the crash, she was transported to Desert Regional Medical Center for treatment of major injuries. She was also arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence but was released for medical treatment.

Despite the efforts of emergency medical professionals, Ostman succumbed to her injuries at 5:05 p.m., CHP Officer J. Kobaly said.

The Riverside County coroner released her name Friday afternoon.

Coulter was transported to Desert Regional Medical Center for treatment of minor injuries and later released. Houk said he was not hurt.

CHP officers arrived on the scene shortly after the crash and began investigating the cause. Highway traffic was diverted west onto Paradise Avenue and Senilis Avenue for about an hour.

The collision is being investigated by Officer J. Radford. Anyone with information is encouraged to call the CHP at (760) 366-3707.

CHP officers reminded everyone to slow down, buckle up and designate a sober driver.

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