A head-on collision resulting from high winds killed a California woman on Highway 18 in Waterman Canyon on January 28, 2012. California Highway Patrol officers and the San Bernadino police closed the stretch of Highway 18 where the auto accident occurred for several hours in order to investigate.
Investigators reported that the victim was travelling northbound on Highway 18 between Upper and Lower Waterman Roads when the driver of a Ford Explorer SUV traveling southbound crossed the center line and slammed into the left front part of her Honda. The force of the impact sent the Honda flying into the side of a church bus filled with kids traveling for a week-long stay at Thousand Pines camp.
None of the children on the bus suffered injuries, but San Bernardino City Fire paramedics had to free the trapped driver of the Honda from her car and transport her to the hospital. She was pronounced dead an hour after arrival. The driver of the SUV and his passenger also went to the hospital, received treatment for unspecified injuries and were both released.
Accident investigators believe the high winds played a role in causing the accident. During the initial investigation, the wind was blowing the investigators’ equipment over. One of the motorcycle police patrolmen also reported that he thought his motorcycle was going to tip due to the wind. Witnesses in the area at the time of the crash suggested that wind speeds reached up to 60 miles per hour.
The accident is a sad reminder of the dangers that the weather can present to drivers. If people are not alert regarding weather conditions when driving, or are not cautious when driving in areas with which they are unfamiliar, tragedies can happen easily.
Source: Mountain News: “Woman Dies in Head-On Crash,” Glenn Barr, Feb. 2, 2012