Local woman recovering after big rig accident

A Hollister woman who narrowly escaped serious injury in an
accident at the intersection of highways 156 and 25 was released
from the hospital.
Julee Klein, 34, of Hollister was released from Hazel Hawkins
Hospital after being treated for a concussion and injuries to her
left arm and shoulder.
A Hollister woman who narrowly escaped serious injury in an accident at the intersection of highways 156 and 25 was released from the hospital.

Julee Klein, 34, of Hollister was released from Hazel Hawkins Hospital after being treated for a concussion and injuries to her left arm and shoulder.

Klein is moving around normally and appears to be on the road to a full recovery from what California Highway Patrol officers said could have easily been in a fatal accident.

“I’m doing much better now,” Klein said.

She said most of what she remembers about the accident is seeing the wall of metal coming toward her as a tractor-trailer rig ran a red light and struck her Toyota 4-Runner.

The 3:02 p.m. accident happened when Klein, who was driving her silver 4-Runner, waited for a traffic light while in the northbound lane of Highway 25, the CHP said.

When the signal turned green, she slowly drove into the intersection. However, as Klein was driving through the intersection, an eastbound International tractor-trailer rig driven by Calvin Diksen, 58, of Mansfield, Wash., drove through a red light and struck the Toyota, the CHP said. Diksen’s truck narrowly missed turning the accident into a head-on collision, which could have killed Klein, investigators and witnesses said.

The big rig’s trailer section struck the front driver’s side of Klein’s Toyota, dragging it out of the intersection and spinning the left side of the 4-Runner around until it slammed against the side of the massive truck, the CHP said.

The force of the collision spun the 4-Runner around a complete 360 degrees, ripping the metal off of the entire left side, and sent it crashing into a blue Chevrolet Silverado driven by Greg Jorgensen, 46, of Morgan Hill. The spinning Toyota caused only minor damage to the front end of the Silverado, the CHP said.

Witnesses like Vincent Bainter of Hollister, said the driver of the Toyota is fortunate.

“She’s very lucky to be alive,” Bainter said. “From where she was you can’t see the truck running the red light.”

He said it was a momentary delay on the woman’s part that saved her life.

“If she had not hesitated before entering the intersection, she would have been killed,” he said.

It does not appear that alcohol or drugs played a role in the crash, and the cause of the accident is still under investigation, the CHP said.

Leave your comments