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UPDATED: Big Rig Accident Snarls Traffic In Newhall Pass

khts_trafficalertUPDATED 10:33 a.m. Tuesday

Seven big rig trucks, including one gas tanker, were involved in a collision that resulted in the closure of the southbound I-5 truck lanes north of the 210 freeway Monday night.

The truck lanes were closed from 10:20 p.m. Monday until 5 a.m. Tuesday to facilitate cleanup of all debris and fuel spilled.


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The problems started when David Perez of Indio was driving a Freightliner big rig at approximately 40 MPH southbound in the I-5 truck lanes just north of the 210. Due to the rain-slicked surface, the speed proved too fast for the roadway and Perez lost control of his truck, swerving to the left,  hitting a Peterbilt truck driven by Erlewine Calvin Lee of Clovis, continuing off the roadway into the embankment and overturning.

Lee drove his vehicle to the right shoulder and stopped. Miguel Madrigal of LaVerne, driving a Volvo tractor-trailer, saw the accident ahead and tried to stop, but slid and jacknifed across both traffic lanes. Richard Lancer Bell of Bakersfield, driving a Freightliner rig, could not stop and his the rear of Madrigal's truck, pushing it into Lee's truck and bringing traffic to a complete stop.

The stoppage caused another collision, when Alex Patatanyn of Northridge tried to stop his Kenworth truck, but could not, hitting the back of a Peterbilt truck driven by Roman Gonzalez of Montclair and a Freightliner truck driven by Hector Hermosillo of Lynwood.

The only injury in this incident was to Patatanyn, who suffered a lacerated hand. He was treated by paramedics at the scene, then transported to Northridge Hospital for further medical attention.

All seven vehicles were towed from the scene. Alcohol and/or drugs do not appear to be a factor in this collision, which is still under investigation.