A fiery multi-vehicle car accident Monday near Woodland claimed the lives of three people, including a 2-year-old girl, according to the California Highway Patrol. Seven people suffered personal injuries in the multi-vehicle car accident, ranging from moderate to severe injuries.
Law enforcement says a preliminary investigation indicates that a 38-year-old Elk Grove man, driving a commercial bobtail truck was traveling too fast near a construction zone. The California Highway Patrol says the truck driver changed lanes to avoid slowing traffic and crashed into a line of vehicles that had stopped along I-5 just before 12:45 p.m. Monday.
Four passenger vehicles and the freight truck burst into flames. The daily Democrat says there are unconfirmed reports that people tried to rush toward a 1996 Acura Integra along the center divider to lend assistance to a 2-year-old passenger in the car. The Acura reportedly became engulfed in flames, forcing back the Good Samaritans. The girl, who was from Tacoma, died in the accident.
Two adults from Oregon, a 53-year-old male and a 49-ryear-old woman were trapped in a 2004 Chevrolet Tahoe along the right shoulder. The occupants of the Tahoe also perished in the fiery crash. Authorities say all three of the deceased suffered burns, but it remains unclear if the three died from impact or as a result of the flames. Autopsies are pending.
Seven other people sustained injuries, including burns, broker bones and other scrapes and lacerations in the multi-vehicle crash. A number of the accident victims were taken to Mercy San Juan hospital in Carmichael.
The truck driver suffered major injuries in the truck accident and was taken to UC Davis Medical Center.
The accident remains under investigation. Authorities say it does not appear that alcohol or drugs were involved in the wreck.
Source: Daily Democrat, “Trucker faulted in deadly I-5 crash,” Katherine Jarvis Aug. 10 2011