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Driver Killed in Car Crash; His Daughter, 5, Seriously Hurt

SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

A man was killed and his 5-year-old daughter seriously injured in a one-car crash Saturday afternoon on a remote stretch of California 34 south of Camarillo, police said.

The driver, 33-year-old Efrain Reyes, was pronounced dead at Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo, where he had been taken by ambulance after the 2:30 p.m. accident, police said.

Reyes’ daughter, Treasure, suffered a cut above her left eye and possibly a broken leg, firefighters said. She was airlifted to St. John’s Regional Medical Center in Oxnard where she was in stable condition Saturday night.

Reyes lived with Treasure and his wife, Maria, in Camarillo, police said. Funeral arrangements were pending. An autopsy is scheduled for this morning, according to the Ventura County medical examiner’s office.

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“For unknown reasons, he drifted to the right shoulder, over-corrected and then overturned,” California Highway Patrol Sgt. Doug Howell said.

Reyes was eastbound on California 34, also known as 5th Street, when he lost control of his brown AMC Hornet and it flipped into a 5-foot ditch next to the railroad tracks, Howell said.

The impact of the crash pushed the car’s front end into its front seat, shattered the front windshield and crushed the top. Skid marks streaked the highway, which runs parallel to a field of crops.

Ventura County Fire Capt. Tom Law said firefighters had to pry open the driver’s door to reach Reyes.

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It was unclear if the pair wore seat belts, Howell said. Alcohol was not believed to be a factor, he added.

The crash, one of dozens reported Saturday on Ventura County roads, forced the closure of California 34 for about two hours while two tow trucks worked to load the wreckage.

In other incidents Saturday afternoon, CHP dispatchers said they were responding to minor- and moderate-injury accidents that occurred in the northbound lanes of the Ventura Freeway at the Lemon overcross and at Lake Piru.


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