California Highway Patrol encourages individuals to wear seat belts after collision reports show three of four accidents over the weekend to be fatal reported no safety equipment used
TULARE COUNTY – Within a span of two days, California Highway Patrol responded to four accidents within the Visalia area. Three of them were fatal while the other resulted in major injuries.
On April 2, at approximately 8:08 p.m., officers of the California Highway Patrol (CHP) Visalia Area Office responded to a call of a traffic crash involving two vehicles. It was determined to be a fatal head-on collision between two vehicles.
A 32-year-old male out of Cutler, whose notification is pending, was driving a 2005 Honda CR-V, on state route 245, or Millwood Drive, in a northerly direction just north of Avenue 368. Luis Garcia, 38, out of Woodlake, was driving a 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe in a southerly direction approaching the Honda. For reasons yet to be determined, the driver of the Honda failed to maintain his lane as he traversed a curve and allowed his vehicle to travel into the southbound lane to his immediate left. After traveling out of his lane, the Honda struck the Chevrolet head on within the southbound lane. The driver of the honda was not wearing his seatbelt and as a result of this crash, the driver of the Honda sustained fatal injuries. The driver of the Chevrolet was not transported. It is unknown if alcohol was a factor and the investigation is ongoing.
Earlier that morning on April 2 at approximately 2:20 am, a two vehicle crash on Hillman Street near Oakdale Avenue in Visalia was called in. Officers from the CHP Visalia Area Office were dispatched to the scene to investigate. Alcohol was suspected to be a factor in this crash.
The preliminary investigation indicates Maxwell Barrios, 25, out of Tulare was driving a 2016 Honda HR-V southbound on Hillman Street near Oakdale Avenue at an unknown rate of speed. At the same time, Geneva Fernandez, 20, of Tulare was driving a 1996 Dodge 1500 on Hillman Street ahead of the Honda’s location at an unknown rate of speed. Due to Barrioss level of suspected impairment, he allowed the Honda to crash with the rear end of the Dodge directly ahead of his location.
As a result of the Honda crashing into the rear end of the Dodge, the Dodge overturned and subsequently came to rest on the roadway. The driver of the Dodge, Fernandez, and her passenger, Heaven Fernandez, 19, sustained major injuries and were transported to Kaweah Medical Center for treatment. Barrios was subsequently arrested for the suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI) and transported to the Tulare County Pretrial Adult Facility.
On April 1, at approximately 8:19 p.m., a solo vehicle crash at Highway 198 and Road 196 was called in. Officers from the CHP Visalia Area Office were dispatched to the scene to investigate.
The preliminary investigation indicates a 32-year-old male of Lindsay, Calif. was driving a 2005 Honda eastbound Highway 198, approaching Road 196. For unknown reasons, the driver allowed the Honda to leave the roadway and travel across the center divider and westbound traffic lanes. The Honda rolled over on the north dirt shoulder and through the perimeter fence. The driver was unrestrained and ejected. He was transported to Kaweah Delta Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. It is unknown if alcohol and/or drugs were a factor in this crash. The California Highway Patrol wants to remind people to always wear your seatbelt.
In the early morning hours on April 1, at approximately 1:13 a.m., a solo vehicle crash into a canal with water at Road 92, south of Oakdale Avenue in Tulare was called in. Officers from the CHP Visalia Area Office were dispatched to the scene to investigate. The preliminary investigation indicated a 32-year-old male of Tulare, CA was driving a 2000 Honda northbound on Road 92 south of Oakdale Avenue. For unknown reasons, the driver braked and turned the steering wheel to the left. The Honda skid across the southbound lane of Road 92 and onto the west dirt shoulder. The Honda began to slide in a counterclockwise manner towards a canal flowing with water. The right rear struck the concrete bridge’s wall, rotated and crashed into the canal.
The driver was unrestrained and was pronounced deceased on scene. It is unknown if alcohol and/or drugs were a factor in this crash. The California Highway Patrol wants to remind people to always wear your seatbelt.