Head-on collision on State Route 89 north of Paulden claims one

A head-on collision north of Paulden killed one person and sent one to the hospital in critical condition June 22. (YCSO/photo)

A head-on collision north of Paulden killed one person and sent one to the hospital in critical condition June 22. (YCSO/photo)

PAULDEN, Ariz. — Austin Joel Obermeyer, a 21-year-old Chino Valley man, died after a head-on collision on Highway 89 north of Paulden June 22, the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) reported June 24.

Central Arizona Fire & Medical Authority (CAFMA) and DPS confirmed Obermeyer passed away after an accident at milepost 341 around 4 p.m. June 22. A woman who was driving the other vehicle involved in the accident was flown by Native Air helicopter to Flagstaff Medical Center in serious condition.

Obermeyer and the woman, whom authorities have yet to identify, were the only passengers in their respective vehicles.

DPS spokesperson Randi Wybron said via email Sunday afternoon that Obermeyer “passed in a no-passing zone and collided head-on with [the woman’s] vehicle,” which was northbound.

The families of both drivers have been notified and the investigation continues, Wybron said Sunday.

The crash forced the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) to shut down the highway in both directions. Crews were busy removing the vehicles from the highway and kept one lane of traffic open until DPS, ADOT and the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office (YCSO) were able to complete their investigation.

Three CAFMA engines, a CAFMA battalion chief, two Life Line ambulances, as well as multiple units from DPS, ADOT and YCSO, were on the scene in addition to the helicopter.

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