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Three-vehicle crash in Pasadena causes delays on Metro Gold Line

A Thursday-morning crash involving a car, a big rig and a pickup truck on the eastbound 210 Freeway in Pasadena snarled traffic and caused delays on the Metro Gold Line, after two of the vehicles ended up on the tracks, authorities said.

Quoting witnesses, the California Highway Patrol said the driver of a green Toyota Camry made an unsafe lane-change, cutting off the big rig. Both vehicles spun out of control, with the big-rig driver swerving to the left and pushing a Chevrolet pickup truck onto the tracks between Sierra Madre Villa Station and Allen Station on the Gold Line.

The big rig also ended up on the tracks, said CHP spokesman Ming Hsu. The accident occurred about 8 a.m.

No one appeared to be seriously hurt, Hsu said, but the driver and a passenger from the pickup truck, as well as the big-rig driver, were transported to Huntington Memorial Hospital for a check.

Traffic on the eastbound side of the 210 was backed up, causing at least an hour's delay, Hsu said. The carpool lane and lanes one and two would be closed until at least 11:30 a.m., according to CHP reports. Westbound traffic was slow "due to looky-loos," Hsu said.

No trains were involved in the incident, but Gold Line service will be delayed up to 20 minutes due to damage to the tracks, said Luis Inzunza, a spokesman for the agency.

Metro Rail trains were being returned from Allen Station, and Metro buses were providing a shuttle service between the Allen and Sierra Madre Villa stations, Metro officials said.

Inzunza said authorities estimated that it would take at least four hours to clear the tracks.

-- Ann M. Simmons

Photo: A three-vehicle crash Thursday morning closed a portion of the Metro Gold Line in Pasadena. Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Comments () | Archives (14)

I'm curious to know what lane the big rig was in; I find it hard to believe it managed to push a pick up truck across three or four lanes without taking anyone else with it. The gold line tracks are to the left of the carpool lane! I can't tell you how often I have seen trucks illegally traveling in the #1 or #2 lanes on the 210. Glad no one was seriously hurt.

The short barrier that separates freeway traffic from the Metro Gold Line should be upgraded. Gold Line riders shouldn't have to live in fear of flying big rigs.

im at pasadena high school and the helicopters r all i hear! good to know that the LA times r on top of their game ;)

This is why any future Metro lines should be either underground or elevated.

Full grade separation on all rail lines would be nice, but not realistically affordable. Because jumping-the-guardrail-and-landing-on-the-tracks accidents are relatively rare, I'd prefer to see grade separation investments at busy intersections and not freeway medians.

I'm also curious as to what lane the big rig was in.
Also curious if the woman was putting on make-up or talking on a cell phone when she cut the truck off. Glad nobody was hurt.

Agree- there should be more of a safety barrier between tracks and freeway traffic. This is a deadly accident waiting to happen.

Unsafe lane change in front of a big rig. I'll bet that turd was also blabbing on the phone and applying makeup.

Why isn't anyone demanding to know the name of the idiot in the green Camry? Toyota, is, I'm sure very curious about this story as it involves another one of their models. The driver (whom, I'm sure is from Glendale) should be identified as he seems to be the one that caused it all.

This is why you should NEVER cut off a big rig!! Duh! Big rigs always leave enough space between them and the car in front of them to allow them to space to slow down if they need to BRAKE and NOT to give you space to cut in front of them. I should know.. my dad is a truck driver and he always tells me stories about people who just cut in front thinking that big rigs can just slow down as quickly as regular vehicles when they really can't! These rigs carry a lot of cargo, people, they can't break as quickly as you or me driving our regular trucks or Hondas. Big rigs can only drive in the two farthest right lanes and cannot drive at speed limit, they have to drive much slower than the rest of the traffic. People take truck drivers for granted, but they really keep businesses and our economy afloat. If this Honda hadn't cut in front of the rig, I'm sure this accident wouldn't have occurred. I was there and it kept me in traffic for HOURS this morning!! I am just thankful the rig driver wasn't my dad, be glad it wasn't your dad either.

This accident did not happen because the Metro Gold Line barrier was too low, it didn't happen because it was a Toyota, and it's not so much what lane the big rig was in...he could have driving in any lane, if he gets cut off, it cannot slow down and will lose control no matter what and end up in those tracks.

I'm a truck driver myself and I drove by shortly after the incident. In my opinion, the rig was likely traveling at an unsafe speed. Even fully loaded at the maximum 40 tons, it would have enough room to slow down to a complete stop if traveling at 55mph or less. From the looks of the devastation and force that the truck broke through the barrier, there was excessive momentum pushing the truck through. That leads me to believe he was speeding, and coupled with being cut off by an unsafe driver, it was a recipe for disaster.

Unfortunately I see this way too often where 'trucks' are speeding and CHP does little about speed enforcement. They are more concerned with hours of service since drivers can only drive a daily max of hours. Their daily log books and safety inspections are what weigh stations are for, however so many CDL drivers speed constantly.

He may not have been able to control the vehicle cutting him off, however at a safe speed the destruction would have been significantly less.

Ever since the Goldline was built I've been saying that the walls are not high enough. It's just like Metro to wait for something like this to happen before even considering making a change. I ride the Goldline all the time and rely on it greatly, and it frustrates and angers me that Metro seems to care little about the safety of the riders, or their own employees for that matter.

I passed by the accident that morning, it seemed soooo horrific! SOOOOOO glad to know everyone is okay! I saw the camry parked with just a dent in the bumper, to know the Camry caused all this, and just walks away with a dent just pisses me off, not that I wish anything bad on the Camry but come on, I honestly thought this was a fatal accident, due to how bad the accident seemed. JUST SO GLAD EVERYONE IS OK! : )))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))


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