The “Dukes of Hazzard,” they were not.
Two Texas men are dead after they attempted to jump an open drawbridge in their car. The men were driving in Louisiana when they were stopped by the opening of a drawbridge to allow a boat to pass.
“Shortly after 2:00 a.m. on May 24, 2019, Louisiana State Police Troop D responded to a single-vehicle crash on LA Hwy 384 (Big Lake Road) at the Black Bayou Bridge about 6 miles south of Lake Charles. The crash claimed the lives of 23-year-old Alejandro Cazares of McAllen, TX and 32-year-old Roberto Alejandro Moreno of Edinburg, TX,” Louisiana State Police said in a statement on Facebook.
NBC News reported that a witness told police that Moreno exited the vehicle and lifted the arm of the gate blocking access to the bridge. He got back in the car, Cazares drove toward the ramp, stopped briefly, then reversed and “accelerated forward in an attempt to ‘jump’ the ramp of the bridge,” police wrote.
Cazares, police said, was unable to get out of the car as it sunk to the bottom of the river. Moreno was found “outside of the submerged vehicle,” but both “were pronounced dead at the scene by the Calcasieu Parish Coroner’s Office,” police wrote.
Police said toxicology samples “were obtained and will be submitted for analysis,” but the crash is still under investigation.
State Trooper Derek Senegal told KPLC-TV connected the crash to what is shown in films.
“That guardrail was down for a reason,” he said. “I’m not sure what they were thinking, and of course we can’t do what’s portrayed in the movies.”
This isn’t the first time someone has tried to jump this drawbridge in a vehicle. In 2016, 37-year-old Morgan J. Lyons tried to jump the drawbridge while fleeing from police. Lyons was wanted on two active warrants. Operators of the bridge tried to stop him by raising the aprons, but Lyons sped through them and his truck “came to rest on the pontoon,” KPLC-TV reported at the time.
“Not only do the traffic arms come down but there’s a concrete barrier that comes up,” Calcasieu Chief Deputy Stitch Guillory told the outlet. “He attempted to actually jump the bridge.”
Lyons had been part of an ongoing drug investigation. After Lyons’ police chase, detectives and FBI agents “found approximately 4.5 kilograms of cocaine, two firearms, and U.S. currency,” KPLC-TV reported.
Lyons was then charged for the chase and multiple felonies relating to his drug enterprise. Lyons was already a convicted felon.