Authorities identify man killed in head-on crash in La Mesa

LA MESA, Calif. – Authorities Thursday identified a 40-year-old driver who died following a head-on crash in La Mesa that was possibly caused by distracted driving.

Hayder Qasim Kadhim al-Faisal of El Cajon was driving westbound in the 4100 block of Riviera Road around 7:45 a.m. Tuesday when his 1998 Toyota Camry drifted into oncoming traffic, according to La Mesa police and the San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office. He crossed the median and collided head- on with a 2000 Jeep Cherokee driven by a 33-year-old woman.

The man was taken to Scripps Mercy Hospital in Hillcrest, where he died around 45 minutes after the crash, according to the Medical Examiner’s Office.

The woman driving the Jeep was treated at a hospital for minor injuries, Lt. Brian Stoney said.

Neither speeding nor intoxication were believed to have played a role in the wreck, according to police.

“There is some evidence to suggest that distracted driving may have been a factor,” the lieutenant said. He did not elaborate.