Driver dies in rollover on I-5 near Los Banos

06/19/2012 12:07 PM

06/19/2012 11:39 PM

Emergency crews had to extricate the body of a man who died in a rollover accident Tuesday morning on Interstate 5 near Los Banos.

About 6:10 a.m., the man was driving a Ford Explorer south on the interstate near Canyon Road when, for an undetermined reason, he lost control of his vehicle, according to California Highway Patrol officer Matt Pinheiro.

The Ford veered from the fast lane to the slow lane, then back across the two lanes toward the center divide. The Ford rolled several times and landed on its top, Pinheiro said.

The driver, who was pronounced dead when emergency crews arrived, had to be extricated from the vehicle.

Five to 10 minutes after the crash, a collision occurred on the other side of the center divide where traffic was slowing in the northbound lanes.

Pinheiro said officers believe the driver of a big rig was looking at the wreckage when he tried to move into the fast lane and hit a trailer being pulled by a Dodge Ram pickup. The trailer overturned, blocking traffic in the fast lane for almost three hours.

No one was hurt in the second accident.

The driver of the Ford had not been identified Tuesday.

Bee staff writer Erin Tracy can be reached at or (209) 578-2366.

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