Speeding truck plows into CHP vehicle working at scene of other crash

SAN JACINTO — A CHP officer and juvenile Explorer Scout on a ride along were both hospitalized but later released after an “errant driver” lost control of his pickup and plowed into their parked patrol vehicle, early Wednesday evening, Jan. 22.

The officer and explorer had been assisting other officers at the scene of another, unrelated collision and were preparing to leave the scene, when a 30-year-old Hemet man’s pickup careened off the roadway, before first striking another car and then the officer’s patrol vehicle, according to officials who investigated the cause of the crash.


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San Gorgonio Pass CHP Officer Ray Lamas and a CHP Explorer ride-along were assisting another CHP officer at the scene of a traffic collision on Gilman Springs Road, just east of Bridge St. around 6:15 p.m., CHP later reported.

After their assistance was no longer needed, the officer and explorer returned to their patrol vehicle, buckled their seat belts, and were discussing the first collision when the westbound driver of the pickup came upon traffic caused by the crash investigation.

CHP says unsafe speed was a primary factor in a three-vehicle crash involving a pickup truck that hit a passenger vehicle before plowing into the back of a CHP patrol car last night. CHP – San Gorgonio Pass photo

The driver, “who was traveling at an unsafe speed for the prevailing traffic conditions,” began to lose control of his vehicle as he attempted to brake for traffic, causing the 2006 Ford F-150 to lose traction with the roadway and began spinning clockwise, according to CHP.

As the Ford careened out of control, it struck the right rear of a 2014 Nissan Altima driven by a 25-year-old San Jacinto woman. The pickup then continued off the right side of the road onto the right-hand shoulder, where it smashed into the left rear of the CHP patrol vehicle.

After the collision, both the officer and explorer were treated at the scene before both were transported to Riverside University Health Systems Medical Center for precautionary reasons.

Both were released a short time later with no injuries, according to CHP; who reported the drivers of the Ford and Nissan were both evaluated at the scene and released with no injuries.

Based on their subsequent investigation, officers ruled out alcohol or drug intoxication as possible contributing factors in the collision.

“We are grateful that no one was injured in this collision,” CHP said after the crash.

“However, this is a stern reminder that complacency can be deadly,” officials continued. “Never assume that your commute will be the same every day. Always be prepared for the unexpected. The minute you relax is the minute you won’t be ready for a hazard, vehicle, pedestrians, or debris in your path. STAY ALERT!”

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Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 48, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, (the now defunct) Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 29 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 16 grandchildren.