3 dead, 2 injured after SUV collides with wild hog, slams head-on into Mercedes

UVALDE, Texas (AP) — A U.S. Border Patrol agent and two other people have died after a sport utility vehicle collided with a wild hog in Southwest Texas, authorities said. Two other people who also were passengers in the Expedition were injured but a spokesman said he had no details about them or their conditions.

The accident happened late Monday on a rural road near Uvalde, about 110 miles southwest of San Antonio. Texas Department of Public Safety spokesman Sgt. Conrad Hein said Tuesday that a preliminary investigation indicates a Ford Expedition collided with the hog, which caused the vehicle to swerve into oncoming traffic and hit a Mercedes SUV head-on.

The Expedition’s driver, 51-year-old Ruby Garza, and the driver of the Mercedes, 27-year-old Antonio Cordova, were pronounced dead at the scene. A passenger in the Expedition, 51-year-old Julia Vasquez, died later at a hospital.

Border Patrol officials in Del Rio, Texas, told The Associated Press on Wednesday that Cordova was a Border Patrol agent and was driving home after finishing a shift at the station in Uvalde.

It was not immediately clear what happened to the hog. Both vehicles were fully engulfed in flames, Hein said.

Texas has a growing hog population that causes millions of dollars’ worth of damage to crops each year. Around the country, feral hogs do more than $1.5 billion a year in damage. They damage crops and hay fields and can spread dozens of diseases.

Scientists are field testing poison baits made from a preservative that’s used to cure bacon and sausage as a way to control the hogs. Tests will start early in 2018 in West Texas and continue in central Alabama around midsummer.

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