LAKE CHARLES, La. (KLFY) — Two Texas men have died after attempting to jump a pontoon bridge that was closed at the time to vehicular traffic to allow a boat to pass.
In the early morning hours of Friday, Louisiana State Police Troop D responded to a single-vehicle crash on LA Hwy 384 (Big Lake Road) at the Black Bayou Bridge about six miles south of Lake Charles.
Upon investigation, it was revealed the driver was traveling south on LA Hwy 384 in a 2016 Chevrolet Cruze when he came to the closed pontoon bridge. A witness says, the passenger got out of the vehicle and pushed the gate arm up. The driver then drove under the gate and picked up the passenger before moving towards the ramp located at the end of the bridge. The driver stopped briefly, to place the vehicle in reverse and then accelerated forward in an attempt to “jump” the ramp of the bridge. The vehicle became airborne, landed in the waterway, and sank to the bottom.
The driver was unable to exit the vehicle and the passenger was found outside of the submerged vehicle.
Both were pronounced dead at the scene.
Toxicology samples were obtained and will be submitted for analysis.
The driver and passenger have been identified as Alejandro Cazares, 23, of McAllen, Texas and Roberto Alejandro Moreno, 32, of Edinburg, Texas.
The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office Marine Division and the U.S. Coast Guard performed search and recovery.