Fatal big-rig crash: One person was killed and three others seriously injured Friday in a pileup involving three big-rigs and another truck on Highway 60 in Diamond Bar.
• A box truck and a big-rig pulled over to the side of the freeway after a minor collision to exchange information.
• Both drivers and two passengers were standing between he trucks when a third truck hauling bananas slammed into the parked big-rig from behind.
• Three of the four people standing between the trucks were crushed. One of them died at the scene and the other two were airlifted to hospitals in critical condition.
• The banana truck overturned but the driver sustained only minor injuries.
California Highway Patrol Officer Kerri Rivas said it started when a Ford F7000 box truck and a tractor trailer got into a minor collision and pulled over to the shoulder to exchange insurance information.
The driver of the box truck and his two passengers were standing between the two trucks with the big-rig driver. A third eastbound big-rig, which was hauling a load of bananas, rear-ended the parked tractor trailer.
The impact caused the parked tractor trailer to lurch forward about 15 feet, Rivas said. Three of the four people standing between the two trucks were crushed. The banana truck then careened to the left and overturned on the freeway, spilling fuel and boxes of fruit onto the roadway.
The box truck driver died at the scene, Rivas said. One of his passengers was able to jump out of the way, but the other one – 40-year-old Arnold Hutchinson of Mira Loma — suffered major injuries. Hutchinson was transported via ground ambulance to Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center and then airlifted via helicopter to Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in Colton. He was listed in critical condition, Rivas said.
The driver of the parked big rig, 53-year-old Constantino Olmos of Riverside, also suffered catastrophic injuries. He was airlifted directly to Los Angeles County USC Medical Center, where he was in the intensive care unit. He also was listed in critical condition, Rivas said.
The driver of the banana truck, 23-year-old Emilio Alvarez of South Gate, sustained minor injuries. He was taken to San Dimas Community Hospital to be treated for complaints of pain, Rivas said.
The freeway was completely closed until two lanes were reopened shortly before 6 p.m., according to a Claremont/Laverne Patch news update.
“Anytime there is fatality, we have to do a long-term closure in order to conduct an extensive investigation,” CHP spokesman Vince Ramirez told the Los Angeles Times.
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