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Angeles Crest Highway: CHP blames drivers for fatalities

August 18, 2011 |  8:13 am

Angeles Crest Highway crashes
Although there have been four fatal crashes on the Angeles Crest Highway since June, California Highway Patrol officials say it's the drivers who are dangerous, not the mountainous road.

An 18-year-old Bellflower resident was killed Saturday as he entered a curve at 45 to 50 mph but failed to turn, hitting a mountainside and flipping his car, CHP Officer Ming Hsu told the Burbank Leader.

Edgar Martinez died in the crash. Hsu said there were no indications drugs or alcohol were involved.

“Maybe it was inattention, playing with his radio or something; he didn’t see the curve in the roadway until it was too late,” Hsu said.

The highway reopened in June after being closed for repair and maintenance work.

Mike Leum, reserve chief for the L.A. County Sheriff's Department's search and rescue unit, said the road is safer now.

“There’s a lot more safety features now than there were prior,” said Leum. “If you drive the road, you’ll see new berms that are higher and they’re angled in such a way I think it’s designed to keep cars on the road.”

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-- Daniel Siegal, Times Community News

Photo: An SUV passes cyclists on Angeles Crest Highway on July 13. Credit: Raul Roa / Times Community News.

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