NAIRN, La. A three-car accident early Tuesday morning left a 19-year-old Buras man dead in an accident near Empire, La.

According to the Plaquemines Parish Sheriff's Office, a 2000 Chevy Silverado driven by 27-year-old Joseph Hicks of Texas was traveling north on LA 23 when it crossed the median, entered the southbound lanes and slammed into a Chevy S-10 pickup. In addition, a Ford Mustang, which was traveling south behind the pickup, was unable to avoid the crash and slammed into the pickup from behind.

The accident occurred around 3 a.m.

The driver of the pickup, identified as Davy Bowers, was pronounced dead on the scene. The driver of the Mustang was not injured, while Hicks, who drove the Silverado, fled the scene and was apprehended several hours later.

Hicks was placed under arrest and booked into the Plaquemines Parish Jail. Hicks was charged with DWI, Hit and Run, Negligent Homicide, Traveling the Wrong Way, No Seat Belt, and Expired Driver's License.

Investigating Troopers report that alcohol impairment may have been a contributor in the crash. Blood was taken from Hicks, and the test results will be pending at the State Police Crime Lab. Routine toxicology tests are pending for Bowers. Robert was cleared of any alcohol involvement. This crash remains under investigation.

Never get behind the wheel of a vehicle if you have had anything to drink. Always have a designated driver or a plan to arrive to your destination safe. While not all crashes are survivable, proper use of seat belts can greatly decrease an occupant's chance of death and may greatly reduce the extent of injury. Always make sure that children are buckled or in the proper child restraints at all times. Louisiana law requires every vehicle occupant, front seat and back seat, to be properly restrained day or night.

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