WEST MINERAL -- Two area men are dead following a late-evening accident near West Mineral Friday.

According to a release from the Cherokee County Sheriff's Department, at 7:50 p.m. Friday CKSO, The Columbus Fire Department, The West Mineral Fire Department and the Columbus Ambulance Service was dispatched to a one vehicle traffic crash near Northwest 20th and Highway 102.

Allen Wayne Bird, 32, West Mineral was the driver of a 1990 Toyota Camry. He, and the passenger, Kenneth Lee Bridgewater, 23, Columbus, were pronounced dead at the scene.

According to the release The initial investigation revealed that the vehicle was traveling eastbound on Highway 102, when it crossed the westbound lane, began to leave the roadway and struck a cement culvert.

Neither occupant was wearing their seatbelt.

Both victims have been transported to Kansas City for autopsies and the investigation into the cause of the collision is ongoing.