5 Adults, 2 Children Die in Visalia Crash

From Associated Press

Five adults and two children died Monday in a head-on collision on a rural highway in Central California, authorities said.

All six people in a car heading east toward Visalia were killed, as was the lone occupant of a westbound car, California Highway Patrol Sgt. Bob Joyner said.

The crash occurred when the driver of a westbound Honda Prelude tried to pass another westbound car on two-lane California 198, lost control and struck an eastbound Hyundai Excel, CHP officers said.

The car being passed was not involved in the collision.


Both cars in the crash were traveling about 60 m.p.h., five miles over the speed limit, according to the CHP.

The highway was closed for five hours as crews cleaned up the wreckage. Traffic was rerouted onto county roads.

The driver of the Honda and five people in the Hyundai were dead at the scene, Joyner said.

The seventh victim, a young girl, died on the way to a hospital after a vain rescue effort by passersby.


Other drivers stopped to help direct traffic and check the victims, said Lisa Weems, 25, who lives about 50 yards from the crash site.

“There was no screeching--no screeching of the tires,” she told the Visalia Times-Delta newspaper. “It was just a boom.”