All Saints Carnage

Why do people drive? It’s so dangerous!

Two major accidents on California State Route 17 last night

Early this morning, a Calstar helicopter landed on a closed Highway 17 near my home in Santa Cruz County to transport the seriously injured victim of a hit and run collision.

Calstar

Calstar helicopter during the day. Calstar is the private, non-profit air ambulance service used to transport accident victims. We have no trauma centers in Santa Cruz County, so those with serious injuries are transported either to the Level 1 trauma center at the Santa Clara Valley Regional Medical Center, or the Level 2 facility available at the Regional Medical Center of San Jose. Both are about 30 miles away from the city of Santa Cruz.

The female victim was driving on the northbound side of Highway 17 between Santa Cruz and Scotts Valley when her pickup truck broke down. She pulled over into the wide shoulder and got out of the truck when she was blindsided by a wrong-way driver on the highway at about 3:30 AM. The wrong-way driver fled (still going the wrong way), but other people in the area reported the wrong-way driver’s description and license plate number to police.

The car is registered to a Santa Cruz resident. When police visited the registered owner, he claimed his roommate borrowed the car. The vehicle and the injured driver was found later this morning in Scotts Valley by Scotts Valley police.

This follows another serious Highway 17 accident near Los Gatos, when a vehicle overturned just after midnight and closed the southbound lanes for nearly two hours.

Cougar deaths

Yesterday morning, a mountain lion was killed while crossing Highway 17 near Vine Hill Road. This young puma gained national fame when it wandered close to downtown Santa Cruz last May. This fatality follows another mountain lion death a few days ago on I-280 in San Jose.

Cars are coffins: California traffic fatalities for Halloween

Highway worker killed on I-680 in Milpitas.

Ford Explorer leaves the roadway of its own accord, slams into tree and bursts into flames, killing the two occupants according to the Fresno Bee.

Two killed in Laguna toll road crash.

Elderly man loses control and loses his life in Six Rivers National Forest east of Arcata, CA on Highway 299 / Trinity Highway.

Big rig vs Ford pickup truck on Highway 99 north of Yuba City.

Man loses control of his Buick on Highway 20 near Clear Lake. His wife loses her life.

More miscellaneous carnage

Car fire closes Caldecott Tunnel. Eight people were sent to the hospital.

Big rig goes over the guard rails in San Francisco on Highway 101.

Multicar pileup snarls Friday morning commute on I-880 in Oakland.

Serial DUI driver finally arrested after a hit-and-run in San Rafael.

Pedestrians and cyclists

Pickup truck driver in Cloverdale, CA somehow doesn’t know to expect children out and about on Halloween night. He plows through a marked crosswalk and seriously injures two boys, sending both to the hospital, with the 12 year old suffering broken bones on both legs. The intersection where this occurred is apparently a trouble spot, with drivers frequently failing to give right-of-way to pedestrians on this location.

Six collisions involving cars and bicycles reported around the state to CHP dispatchers on Halloween. Half involved juveniles on bikes. None involved serious injury or death. We had one pedestrian fatality in Sacramento last night. This is exclusive of collisions that are reported directly to local police outside of the CHP dispatch system.

One comment

  • Tony Rocha (@aerocha)
    November 1, 2013 - 1:30 pm | Permalink

    The Big rig vs Ford pickup truck on Highway 99 north of Yuba City, that Ford was being driven by a Butte County Correctional Officer.

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