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Car launches into air after hitting casino landscaping, killing one


Paul Takahashi

Metro Police investigate after a fatal crash on Flamingo Road on New Year’s Day.

Updated Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013 | 7:14 p.m.

Flamingo Road crash

Metro Police investigate a fatal accident on Flamingo Road, Jan. 1, 2013. Launch slideshow »

Map of Gold Coast Casino

Gold Coast Casino

4000 W. Flamingo Road, Las Vegas

One woman is dead and another is in the hospital after a strange New Year’s Day crash outside the Gold Coast casino.

Witnesses told Metro Police they saw a vehicle driving erratically on Flamingo Road in front of the Palms Resort at about 12:40 p.m. Tuesday.

The vehicle, a silver 1996 Lincoln Town Car, was traveling at a high speed eastbound down Flamingo Road when it turned north onto Wynn Road and entered the Gold Coast Hotel and Casino parking lot.

The driver – a 73-year-old woman – then lost control of the vehicle, sideswiping an unoccupied parked Toyota Camry and the western wall of a parking structure.

The Lincoln then drove through the parking lot landscaping, which launched the vehicle into the air. The car traveled south across the westbound lanes of Flamingo Road, where it hit a white 2001 Nissan Altima and then rolled over, police said.

The female driver of the Lincoln was ejected from the car, Sgt. Richard Strader said. She was taken to University Medical Center's Trauma Center, where she was later pronounced dead.

The driver of the Nissan – a 44-year-old woman – suffered moderate injuries and was transported to UMC, according to a Metro press release.

Police don’t yet know if drugs or alcohol were a factor in the crash, but Strader said it was a “unique accident.” Police also have not ruled out any medical conditions as a cause for the crash.

“The tragic thing here is we’re starting 2013 with a fatality, Strader said. "We just need to be careful."

Flamingo Road was closed in both directions from Arville Street to Valley View Boulevard for several hours Tuesday afternoon.

The accident remains under investigation. The identity of the woman driving in the Lincoln will be released by the Clark County Coroner's Office pending notification of next of kin.

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  1. They don't know if drugs or alcohol were involved??? Seriously ?? how about that and a high speed down the avenue.Will they ever learn?Where were her know the ones that should have taken her car keys away from her??We're barely hours into the NEW YEAR and already the DEATH TOLL is mounting up.What a TOTAL WASTE of a life.WOW

  2. @babyboomer, the person causing the accident is dead so metro could not have questioned her. And did it occur to you that the lady might have had a medical episode (heart attack, diabetes blackout, etc.) Maybe we should actually have a few facts before making rambling emotional statements, hummm?

  3. 6 deaths already in Vegas attributed to car accidents and it's only day 1 of 2013. So, much for a 'Zero Fatality' New Year.

  4. There could have been a medical problem like a heart attack....or the car could have had a mechanical problem. Too early to say. But wow, that's a crazy car accident.

  5. Having witnessed a driver suffer a diabetic seizure that resulted in a similar accident (without fatality), it sure seems as if a medical episode was involved. "Zero fatality" is an impossible fantasy given all variables.

  6. <<Having witnessed a driver suffer a diabetic seizure that resulted in a similar accident (without fatality), it sure seems as if a medical episode was involved. "Zero fatality" is an impossible fantasy given all variables>>

    If one is a diabetic, you KNOW when things are not right and take proper steps immediately no matter what you are doing or where you are. It does not happen quickly unless you are totally clueless on the disease you have. One ALWAYS needs to be prepared. If you are driving, you pull over. That is Rule No. 1 and every diabetic knows this. My guess is this woman suffered a heart attack or some other problem, ie her blood pressure dropping quickly, more than a diabetic episode.

  7. "If one is a diabetic, you KNOW when things are not right and take proper steps immediately no matter what you are doing or where you are."

    Good luck with that! My wife is Type 2. She controls it very well through diet and exercise. But when she was first diagnosed she attended classes that were hosted by a dietician where she met other people. The amount of people who are diabetic and actually take care of themselves is VERY low. There were people who had ben diagnosed years before and just let themselves become morbidly obese, as well as ones that refused to stop drinking and laughed about blacking out.

    As for this accident, if it's not medical related it's probably driver error. The old woman probably got confused between the gas pedal and the brake, and kept pressing the gas harder to try and stop the car. On top of that she obviously wasn't wearing a seatbelt and despite the loss of control here, caused her own death.

  8. Let's go back to horse & buggy days. That would save a lot of lives, right? About as ignorant an idea as taking guns away from law-abiding citizens. As long as there are more than 2 vehicles on the road and careless, thoughtless or aggressive drivers, there will be accidents; many fatal. That's a given and cannot be stopped no matter what we do. For the nanny-state fanatics, only piling on more & more rules, restrictions and laws is the answer, regardless of the futility. To protect yourself, you must drive defensively and that may not be enough - but to depend on rules, regulations and government to protect you? Forget about it.