Gaithersburg contractor dies in crash
Police investigating if speed, negligence caused Saturday accident
Montgomery County police are investigating if a fatal accident Saturday at the intersection of Washington Grove Lane and Midcounty Highway was caused by a speeding teenage driver.
Lenard Ostilio Pineda-Guardado was pronounced dead at the scene after a 1998 Dodge Durango plowed into the passenger side of the pickup truck he was in, according to county police. Pineda-Guardado, of the 8100 block of Pepperwood Lane, was in the front passenger seat of the 1996 Ford Ranger, which flipped and crashed into a 2004 Toyota Corolla, police spokesman Cpl. Dan Friz said Monday.
"I had the green light," Gaithersburg resident Christian Alfaro, the driver of the pickup truck said Monday. "I was just going home to pick up a tool and I was going right back to work."
Investigators believe the 17-year-old driver, who had four other teenagers in the SUV, was rushing to a school event, Friz said. Police do not know what school the teenager attended. He has not been charged, Friz said. His parents did not return a message left Monday.
The teenager, who had a provisional driver's license, and a 16-year-old front passenger were taken to Shady Grove Adventist Hospital in Rockville and treated and released, Friz said. The three teenagers in the back of the vehicle were not injured.
Alfaro and the truck's other passenger Eugino A. Garsia Andrade, 20, of Gaithersburg, were treated and released from Suburban Hospital in Bethesda, Friz said. The driver of the Corolla was not injured, Friz said.
Alfaro, 23, and Pineda-Guardado lived a block apart and worked for a home remodeling contractor for more than a year. Alfaro said the day of the accident they were painting an apartment near Lakeforest mall.
"I worked with him every day for more than a year," Alfaro said. "He taught me a lot of what I know now about home remodeling."
Alfaro was driving south on Washington Grove Lane at about 4:40 p.m. Saturday when the accident occurred. The teenager was driving east on Midcounty Highway.
Only direct family members can ride in a vehicle with a person with a provisional driver's license within the first five-months of having it, said Caryn Coyle, spokeswoman for the Maryland Vehicle Administration. Provisional licenses are given to drivers under 18, she said.
The first time a provisional driver is found guilty of a moving violation, they must complete a driver training course, Coyle said. A second violation carries a 30-day suspension of the teen's license, she said. The third violation could lead to a 180-day suspension of the license and the license could be revoked. Any accident involving a fatality caused by any licensed driver always involves a court hearing, she said.