The driver of a black Nissan Sentra died Friday morning after he crossed over the double yellow lines to pass vehicles on Stockton Street in Sonora and crashed head-on with a white Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools van.
Sonora Police Department Officer Scott Mallon said the driver was reported to have been driving at speeds in excess of 80 miles per hour and passed multiple vehicles over the double yellow lines while heading southbound toward the intersection with Highway 108 at approximately 8:30 a.m..
Just after a blind curve, Mallon pointed out skid marks which indicated the Nissan veered over the white line on eastbound side of Stockton Street before overcorrecting into the path of the northbound van south of Mill Villa Road.
“He was on his rim at this point,” Mallon said.
Mallon said the driver was pinned in the vehicle and the doors had to be removed to extricate him. Mallon said he checked the man’s pulse and noted he was already deceased when officials arrived on the scene.
The man was not wearing his seatbelt, Mallon said.
The female driver of the van sustained injuries and was taken by ambulance to a hospital in Modesto, he said. Helicopter medical flights were grounded at the time due to weather conditions.
The Sonora Police Department is not releasing names of the parties involved in the collision pending next of kin notification for the driver of the Nissan.
Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools Cathy Parker said the van was used as a delivery vehicle for meals and parcels to district offices throughout the county.
She said no students were in the vehicle at the time and the driver was an employee of the Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools Office.
In the aftermath of the collision, the fronts of both vehicles were crunched and warped on the side of the northbound lane. Debris from the vehicles were littered on the pavement, including papers, soda bottles and an empty bag of diapers.
Multiple Sonora Police officers and fire officials were on scene clearing the area before tow trucks began arriving after 9:30 a.m.
Stockton Street was closed in both directions from Highway 108 to east of Ponderosa Drive.
Mallon said the road would reopen when the vehicles were removed.
Contact Giuseppe Ricapito at (209) 588-4526 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @g_ricapito