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Speed, winter weather factors in fatal U.S. 550 crash

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — An Albuquerque man died in a two-vehicle crash on U.S. 550 on Friday, according to the Sandoval County Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff’s office spokesman Lt. Keith Elder said it appears speed and winter driving conditions were factors in the wreck that killed 47-year-old Michael Chavez.

Deputies were called the scene near milepost 95, in the area of Counselor, Friday morning, Elder said in a news release.

Elder said Chavez lost control of his northbound 2003 Dodge truck, which skidded into the southbound lanes and collided with a southbound semi-truck. The two men in the pickup truck — neither was wearing a seatbelt — were ejected.

Chavez was pronounced dead at the scene. The passenger, 29-year-old Michael Rodriguez, also of Albuquerque, was flown to University of New Mexico Hospital in critical condition. The semi-truck driver was not injured.