Fiery crash into trees kills two
Source: Union Tribune
Author: Ronald W. Powell
Diego, CA - Street-race tragedy: Fiery crash into trees kills two.
young man and a young woman involved in a street race died in a fiery
crash early yesterday when their car struck a tree-studded median on
Sorrento Valley Road, San Diego police said.
occupants of the 1997 Acura sedan were racing against another car when
the driver apparently lost control and skidded into the small stand of
conifer trees, police said. The vehicle struck one tree, slammed into a
second, ripped into two parts, then burst into flames.
least 12 people have died in the county this year while street racing.
Medical Examiner's Office said the two died inside the burned vehicle.
said the accident was reported at 3:05 a.m. Medical examiner's personnel
were attempting to confirm the identities of the crash victims through
marks leading to the trees were visible yesterday afternoon, apparent
evidence of the car's northbound sprint into the darkness. Shattered
glass, sheared-off car parts and melted metal littered the area where
the car came to rest. A black, oily substance coated the ground. The
trunk and upper reaches of one tree were scorched.
businessman whose office is located nearby in one of the many business
parks that line Sorrento Valley Road said street racing takes place
there most Friday and Saturday nights.
Diego police have repeatedly made sweeps through the area, warning,
ticketing drivers and otherwise discouraging the illegal competitions.
However, the businessman described the mostly young racers as so
addicted to the adrenaline rush of burning tire rubber and vehicular
speed that they are contemptuous of danger.
told them many times before to stop because they're just going to get
hassled by the cops," said the man. "They say, 'We know, but
we've got no place else to go.' I'll bet this stops them – for a
said sometimes as many as 200 cars descend on more than a one-mile
stretch of Sorrento Valley Road, west of Interstate 5 and between
Sorrento Valley Boulevard and Carmel Mountain Road. Some are occupied by
participants, others by spectators.
give police a lot of credit for trying to stop it," he said.
"But the kids are not going to stop."
thrill of the illicit races were depicted in last year's box office hit
"The Fast and the Furious." But street racing doesn't always
have a movie's happy ending.
are young, dumb and feel invincible; they feel 'it won't happen to me,'
" said San Diego police Officer Rich Vergara. "There are
endless battles. You try to shut it down, but they move somewhere else.
It's like (trying to stop) graffiti." Vergara said one deterrent
may be to make supervised racing more available. Such races are
sometimes held at the Qualcomm Stadium parking lot and at Carlsbad
Raceway, where emergency medical personnel are on hand.
Questions, comments and
criticisms can be directed to: Jeff