California

Four hop bridge railing and fall 75 feet into canyon after crash, California cops say

Four people involved in a solo crash on Highway 56 near San Diego, California, hopped a bridge railing and fell up to 75 feet into a canyon, killing two, highway patrol officers say.
Four people involved in a solo crash on Highway 56 near San Diego, California, hopped a bridge railing and fell up to 75 feet into a canyon, killing two, highway patrol officers say. Screengrab from KSWB screengrab

A solo spin-out crash on a Highway 56 bridge near San Diego turned fatal Tuesday night when four people in the car inexplicably fell up to 75 feet into a canyon, KNSD reported.

Two men died and two teen girls suffered severe injuries, KSWB reported. The four may have feared being hit by another vehicle on the bridge, investigators say.

They apparently did not realize the bridge stood 50 to 75 feet over a Carmel Valley canyon at that point, according to the station.

California Highway Patrol officers seek two other occupants of the vehicle who apparently walked off the bridge after the 11:00 p.m. wreck, the Times of San Diego reported.

The deaths and injuries followed a solo crash in which a Nissan Altima spun out and struck the railing, KNSD reported.

Investigators found an open beer bottle in a front-seat cup holder, but CHP officials say it’s too early to determine whether drunken driving was involved, KSWB reported.

After the crash, the six occupants dashed across the freeway and four hopped a low concrete railing over the side, the Times of San Diego reported.

“When the occupants got out, they were probably unfamiliar with the area and unfortunately jumped over the wall,” said CHP Sgt. Brent Lowry, KSWB reported.

In February, a 48-year-old man died after jumping off a 400-foot highway bridge in San Diego to avoid an oncoming vehicle, McClatchy previously reported. He had stopped to help the driver of a crashed truck.

The man may not have realized the height of the bridge in the darkness and fog, authorities say.

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Don Sweeney has been a newspaper reporter and editor in California for more than 25 years. He has been a real-time reporter based at The Sacramento Bee since 2016.
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