UPS delivery driver run over in fatal collision

Struck by a Peterbilt commercial truck, UPS driver is ejected from van, leading to his death

TULARE COUNTY – A UPS delivery driver was fatally struck on Friday when a commercial Peterbilt truck attempted to pass, but struck the UPS van instead.

According to a CHP collision report, on Feb. 5 at 3:37 p.m. officers from the Visalia area office responded to a call at Avenue 120 west of Highway 99 between Tipton and Pixley.

During the investigation it was determined Jose Blancas, 57, of Tipton was driving his 2014 Peterbilt commercial truck tractor, while pulling a pair of 1990, Utility, agricultural trailers; traveling eastbound on Avenue 120. A 25-year-old male, was driving a 2020 UPS Freightliner delivery van, also traveling eastbound on Avenue 120, in front of the Peterbilt. His name is withheld pending notification of his family.

Blancas passed the UPS delivery van, traveling eastbound in the westbound lane. For reasons yet to be determined, the right front of the Peterbilt struck the driver’s door area of the delivery van. The passenger compartment doors of the UPS van were secured in the open position, and the driver was not wearing his seatbelt.

The impact ejected the driver onto the roadway, and under the Peterbilt and tandem trailers. The male driver was subsequently run over. The Peterbilt veered to the left until it came to rest on the north shoulder of Avenue 120. The impact caused the then driverless UPS delivery van to continue in an east by southeasterly direction into a field, until it came to a stop on its own. The driver suffered fatal injuries as a result of being run over.

Blancas was uninjured. The cause of this traffic collision is still under investigation. Alcohol and/or drugs do not appear to be a contributing factor to this collision.

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