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Santa Maria area designated driver service offered after deadly, suspected DUI crash

Friends, volunteers join up to provide free rides

Santa Maria area designated driver...

SANTA MARIA, Calif. - Family and friends of two Santa Maria women killed in a suspected DUI car crash earlier this week have joined forces this weekend to try and prevent drinking and driving and further loss of life.

They're providing free, sober drivers for anyone in the Santa Maria and Orcutt community Friday and Saturday night.

The goal is to spread community awareness about the dangers of drinking and driving and the importance of having a designated driver.

"No one likes to have to experience grief on this level", says Monique Nichols as she reflects on the loss of two of her friends in a rollover car crash along Highway 135 and Orcutt Road near Santa Maria early Monday morning, "this has been devastating on so many levels".

The CHP says 25 year old Cameron Oliver was driving under the influence early Monday morning when he lost control of the car as it left the highway and flipped over.

Killed at the scene was 37 year old Leann Stauffer.

37 year old Tricia Jensen died later in the hospital after being placed on life support.

Both women were mothers of young children.

"Its unfortunate its taken a tragedy like this but its also amazing to see the army of angels volunteering to come together to help out for a cause like this", Nichols says.

Family and friends of Tricia Jensen and Leann Stauffer, as well as volunteers from the community, are offering free, designated drivers Friday and Saturday night for anyone that needs it.

They've handed out flyers all around the Santa Maria and Orcutt area with a phone number on it to call for the free ride.

"We have volunteer designated drivers that are willing to pick anyone up, drop them off, pick them back up if you plan on going out and drinking", Nichols says, "we're urging everyone to not get behind the wheel and drive, we have sober drivers that are out there for you."

Any donations collected during the sober driver campaign will go to the families of Tricia Jensen and Leann Stauffer.

"We hope that maybe this causes a ripple effect that touches people maybe not just in our community but other communities here on the Central Coast, and even more outreaching than that", Nichols says, "for people to help create awareness to the dangers of drinking and driving."


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