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Three people killed in multi-vehicle crash in La Quinta, one significantly injured

Three people were pronounced dead after a crash involving multiple vehicles, including a pickup truck and two motorcycles, and a pedestrian in La Quinta Tuesday night.

Deputies from the Riverside Sheriff's Thermal Station responded to the crash at around 9:20 PM in the area of Highway 111 and Simon Drive, near Washington Street.

Upon arrival, deputies located two motorcycles and a white Chevrolet pickup truck on Highway 111 west of Simon Drive.

Four individuals with significant injuries were located as well.

CalFire and AMR arrived and conducted life-saving measures.

The Thermal Sheriff's Station's La Quinta Traffic Collision Reconstruction Team responded to the scene and took over the investigation.

According to the Riverside County Sheriff's Office, the preliminary investigation found that the two motorcycles were traveling eastbound on Highway 111 when one of the motorcycles struck a pedestrian crossing Highway 111. This caused the rider of the motorcycle to be ejected into the westbound traffic lanes.

As witnesses began providing aid to the motorcyclist, a white Chevrolet pickup traveling westbound on Highway 111 struck the motorcycle, causing the driver to veer into the median and hit two of the individuals providing aid to the motorcyclist.

Our crew at the scene saw a white pickup truck that crashed into a palm tree in the center divider

The motorcyclist, the pedestrian, and one witness providing aid were pronounced deceased on scene by CalFire.

The three individuals were identified as 33-year-old Maria Reyes of La Quinta, 47-year-old Katherine Vogts of Palm Desert, and 26-year-old Brandt Celli of Indio.

According to loved ones, Katherine "Katie" Vogts was a nurse who stopped at the scene to provide aid after witnessing the crash.

"There has been an accident, I have to go save people," she told her niece on the phone on scene of the crash, according to a GoFundMe page set up by loved ones.

Vogts was struck and killed by a vehicle while she was attempting to provide CPR to one of the victims, loved ones said. 

A fourth individual withstood significant injuries and was rushed to a local hospital.

The driver of the Chevrolet pickup remained at the scene and cooperated with investigators. Drugs or alcohol are not believed to be a factor in this collision.

The road was cleared around 5:45 AM on Wednesday morning. There were 2 motorcycles and 2 cars towed away.

Highway 111 between Simon Drive and Washington Street has been reopened in both directions.

The investigation is still ongoing. Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to contact Deputy K. Moore of the Thermal Sheriff's Station's La Quinta Traffic Team at (760) 863-8990 or call anonymously at (760) 341-STOP (7867).

Stay with News Channel 3 for continuing updates.

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