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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA / A news summary

Driver Dies as Truck Hits House by Freeway

November 03, 2000

POMONA — A flatbed truck veered off the San Bernardino Freeway on Thursday afternoon, hitting several utility poles and smashing into a wall before plunging into a home, authorities said.

The 41-year-old driver was pronounced dead at the scene.

The initial call for the crash came at 12:22 p.m. near the 800 block of East La Verne Avenue. The driver may have suffered a seizure, said Inspector Ray Rodriguez of the Los Angeles County Fire Department. An autopsy will determine the exact cause of the accident.

"The truck was traveling in the westbound lane. It left the freeway, went down the embankment and hit the sound wall," said Inspector Roland Sprewell of the Fire Department. "It slammed into the rear portion of the house and penetrated into the wall of the home."

Although there were a woman and two children in the house, no one was injured, Rodriguez said.

Sprewell said 30 firefighters spent "an arduous one hour" trying to free the man from the wreckage and had to use a tow truck to lift the vehicle. By the time the driver was freed, he was pronounced dead.

The victim was driving a truck with the sign Jim's Towing and was transporting a light-colored Jaguar. The car was thrown off the flatbed near the scene of the crash, Sprewell said.

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