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California

Bicyclist crushed by falling shipping container was Long Beach resident

A bicyclist who was crushed to death when a shipping container slipped off a big rig and fell on him on a street in Carson has been identified.

Robert Castorena, 51, of Long Beach was killed about 5 p.m. Tuesday when the container somehow came loose and fell on top of him as he rode on Santa Fe Avenue near Warnock Way along the Carson-Long Beach city border, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.

The truck struck a railroad bridge north of the 405 Freeway, next to a shipping container yard off Santa Fe, and its cargo fell off, authorities said. That stretch of road is a legal route for truckers, according to Carson and Long Beach city maps.

The incident is under investigation by the sheriff’s department.

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Accidents involving large trucks rarely result in death, according to data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Of about 327,000 police-reported crashes involving large trucks in 2013, 1% resulted in death and 21% resulted in nonfatal injury. Most fatal crashes involving large trucks occur on rural roads.

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Single-vehicle crashes -- including crashes that involved a bicyclist, pedestrian or nonmotorized vehicles -- made up 22% of all fatal crashes and 14% of all injury crashes involving large trucks in 2013, the FMCSA said.

Staff writer Matt Hamilton contributed to this report.

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