According to Oregon State Police a white 2005 Toyota Corolla driven by Briana Varela, 27, was traveling south on Hwy 199 near milepost 22 when for unknown reasons she crossed into the northbound lanes and struck a 2018 Nissan Versa carrying two people.
Those passengers were Elizabeth Real, the driver, and her passenger Kelly Karaba.
Both Real and Varela were transported to Three Rivers Medical Center and later flown to hospitals in Seattle and Eugene for further treatment. Varela, who was flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, Washington, later died from her injuries.
Real was later housed in Riverbend Hospital in Eugene for serious injuries. Karaba was flown to Rogue Regional Medical Center where she is also recovering from serious injuries.
OSP says Varela was reported as a reckless driver about 16 miles prior to the site of the crash. Police are asking for more information from anyone who may have witnessed the driver’s behavior or the crash to call Oregon State Police dispatch at 541-776-6111 or *OSP and reference CASE #SP18-435402.
NBC5 News Reporter Miles Furuichi graduated from Chapman University with degrees in English and Journalism. He received post graduate experience in Los Angeles in photojournalism and commercial photography. He also spent time in Dublin, Ireland working in print journalism and advertising.
Miles is a Rogue Valley native, raised in Ashland. He enjoys hiking, mountain biking and photography.