Monday was a deadly day for driving in Stanislaus County, with fatal crashes claiming lives near Patterson and Waterford.
At least two people lost their lives including a 1-year-old girl and several others were seriously injured but hanging on.
The first fatal crash happened about 12:30 p.m. when a family reportedly driving to Turlock Lake flipped its car over, landing in an irrigation canal east of Waterford.
According to the California Highway Patrol, the mother, father and daughter were in a 1995 Honda Civic on Lake Road east of Hawkins Road.
The 22-year-old mother was driving 50 to 60 mph when she lost control and hit a Turlock Irrigation District embankment, authorities said. The car flipped, rolled into the canal and became submerged.
The mother and her 1-year-old daughter had been pulled out of the water and cardiopulmonary resuscitation was being performed by bystanders when rescue personnel reached the scene.
The woman suffered major injuries and was taken to Memorial Medical Center in Modesto. The child was pronounced dead at Oak Valley Hospital in Oakdale.
The father, Paul Seutter, 22, of Modesto, sustained moderate injuries and was flown by helicopter to Doctors Medical Center in Modesto.
The CHP responded to another deadly crash about 3 p.m.
That head-on collision north of Patterson pitted a big rig truck against a Volkswagen Beetle, and it closed Highway 33 near Hamilton Road for more than two hours.
CHP Sgt. Ben Moser said a 40-year-old Oakland man was driving the Beetle north on the two-lane highway when he spun out of control into oncoming traffic. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
His 38-year-old female passenger from Berkeley suffered major injuries and was flown by helicopter to Doctors Medical Center.
Hector Alvarez, 23, of Newman was driving the truck and trailer home from work when the collision occurred. Alvarez was not injured.
Bee staff writer J.N. Sbranti can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 578-2196.