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1 Killed, 2 Critically Injured In I-79 Crash

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(Credit: NewsChopper 2/KDKA)

(Credit: NewsChopper 2/KDKA)

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FRANKLIN PARK (KDKA) — Pennsylvania State Police say a car traveling north on Interstate 79 crossed the median, went airborne and crashed head-on into an SUV coming the other way Wednesday afternoon.

Inside the SUV was a mother and child. The impact of the crash sent the SUV off the road and down a hill.

Corporal Kevin Brown says a female passenger in the car was killed. She has been identified by authorities as 52-year-old Diane Spuntak of Mars.

“The vehicle was traveling northbound, for some reason crossed over the center median, when it exited the center median it became airborne, [and] struck another vehicle that was traveling southbound,” said Cpl Brown.

He said the driver of the car and the driver of the SUV were both critically injured. The 7-week-old child, who had been properly placed in a child safety seat, was not hurt.

Officials have identified the driver of the car as 58-year-old James McGuigan. The woman driving the SUV has been identified as 25-year-old Brennda Halbedl.

Traffic on Interstate 79 was backed up for hours on Wednesday as police funneled three lanes into one just south of the Wexford exit.

Accident re-constructionists are trying to determine why the car crossed the median.

McGuigan, of Mars, and Halbedl, Of Oakdale, were both taken to Allegheny General Hospital for treatment.

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