November 5, 2012

In wake of Ceres wreck, CHP cautions northbound drivers entering Modesto

Two people escaped major injuries Monday morning in a wreck along an area of Highway 99 that’s becoming far too known for its rush-hour collisions.

Two people escaped major injuries Monday morning in a wreck along an area of Highway 99 that's becoming known for its rush-hour collisions.

About 7:40 a.m., Gagandeep Singh, 32, of Livingston was driving north on the highway just south of East Hatch Road when he came upon traffic that had slowed, according to officer Eric Parsons of the California Highway Patrol.

Singh saw the slowdown at the last minute and tried to swerve. However, he lost control of his vehicle, which slammed into the center divide. The vehicle went back into traffic and came to a stop on its side in the far left lane.

Meanwhile, Sean Gowin, 18, of Denair was riding his motorcycle when he came upon the accident. He did all he could to avoid it before his motorcycle went down, Parsons said.

Gowin, who crashed in the middle lane, was taken to Doctors Medical Center in Modesto with moderate injuries. Singh was transported to Kaiser Modesto Medical Center with minor injuries.

Parsons said the investigation is ongoing and drugs or alcohol did not play a role. Singh was wearing a seat belt and Gowin was wearing a helmet.

The wreck caused major backups for traffic coming into Modesto.

The CHP is asking motorists driving north in the area of north Ceres and south Modesto to drive with caution each day, especially during the morning commute.

Parsons said driver visibility can be compromised when the highway takes two turns near Modesto, causing traffic to slow quickly and causing a chain reaction for those behind.

Brian Clark, Bee Senior Editor for digital, can be reached at bclark@modbee.com or (209) 589-2362.

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