A 77 year-old female passenger died Sunday from injuries she sustained in a major collision on Bay Avenue and Contempo Drive Saturday. The accident remains under investigation.
Paulene Garcia, 19 of Toms River, was driving south on Contempo and turning eastbound onto Bay Avenue when a 2007 Hyundai driving eastbound on Bay Avenue struck Garcia’s 1997 Mazda, said Chief Michael Mastronardy.
The driver of the Hyundai, Alexander Long, 21, of Toms River was transported to Jersey Shore University Hospital. He had no passengers in his vehicle, police said.
Paulene Garcia was driving with two relatives: Diodor Garcia, 78, who was transported to along with Paulene Garcia. Toms River Police EMS provided emergency transport.
The second passenger, Frances Garcia, 77, of Toms River, was transported to Jersey Shore University Hospital in critical condition and later died from her injuries Sunday afternoon, police said.
Toms River Police Traffic Safety Officer Robert Westfall is investigating.
Sand from the accident cleanup was still visible at the intersection of the crash, as was shattered automotive glass and shards of vehicle parts along the curb and shoulder of the county road, also known as Route 571.
The stretch of road is near the intersection with Cedar Grove Road, with Contempo and its adjoining streets ending in culdesacs. The intersection is before an eastbound curve in the road heading toward Vaughn Avenue, and the road was briefly closed Saturday as emergency responders tended to the accident.
Frances Garcia’s death is the traffic fatality in Toms River this year.