Two dead when truck drives over cliff near Austin

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by ASHLEY GOUDEAU

KVUE

Posted on March 10, 2013 at 7:14 PM

Updated Sunday, Mar 10 at 8:46 PM

Resort Ranch of Lake Travis

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LAGO VISTA, Texas -- Saturday night's stormy weather may have played a part in a crash that killed two people and sent another to the hospital.

Three men in their 20s were in a pickup truck that drove off a cliff at the Resort Ranch of Lake Travis marina and fell 100 feet.

Their vehicle landed about 50 feet from the water's edge at the facility about 20 miles northwest of Austin.

"I don't know how they went off road, but they went off road in a big way," said Pedernales Emergency Services Lt. Steve Rudkin.

"There were roads out there, but they weren't paved. Maybe they got lost or turned around. I know walking back there I got turned around two or three times. It's very thick brush grown over the roadway that's there," Rudkin added.

At 10 o'clock Saturday night, the owner of the property saw the men driving around in a 4-wheel-drive pickup truck. At midnight, a call came in to 911 from one of the men. He was pinned underneath the truck.

"The patient was trapped and had to locate a cell phone. No idea if he lost consciousness or for how long," Rudkin said. "We spent about 30 to 45 minutes trying to locate the people in the car. It was very difficult for us to find. It was well off of any normal road."

Heavy rain only made things worse.

"It was raining very hard. It's been raining off and on all night. And, in fact, we had a difficult time at first getting Starflight to come due to weather," Rudkin said.

Crews spent 90 minutes working to free the only survivor of the crash.

"It's all tree and rough gravel and it's very difficult to walk to. Very difficult to get our equipment down there," Rudkin said. "Even our vehicles, we have several vehicles that are stuck down there. Our engine is in fact stuck in the mud."

Finally, they freed the survivor and he was taken to University Medical Center Brackenridge in Austin. Now investigators with the Travis County Sheriff's Office will work to find out exactly what led to this horrific accident.

The condition of the man who was rescued is unknown at this time.

We're told that the resort is a popular spring break attraction.

According to the Resort Ranch at Lake Travis website, the entire resort is under renovation.

The property owner would not permit cameras to go inside and has not returned phone calls from KVUE-TV.

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