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Man Burns to Death in Freeway Crash

September 15, 2006|Mai Tran | Times Staff Writer

A man was killed and two people injured when a big-rig slammed into two cars and burst into flames, closing the 91 Freeway for nearly seven hours, officials said Thursday.

The man was burned beyond recognition, officials said.

"The heat was so intense, it burned the car's vehicle identification number and the license plates," said Jim Amormino, a spokesman for the Orange County Sheriff's Department. "We still don't know who he is. We have to wait until someone files a missing-persons report."

The collision occurred about 7:45 p.m. Wednesday after Anh Truong lost control of the 1998 Freightliner tractor trailer he was driving west near Kraemer Boulevard in Anaheim, said California Highway Patrol Officer Keith Meter.

Truong, 29, of Westminster, veered into an Acura Integra, driven by Nancy Selim, 25, of Diamond Bar. The impact forced Selim to drive off the freeway and through a fence before stopping in a parking lot, officials said. She suffered minor injuries and was taken to Anaheim Memorial Hospital.

The big-rig then collided with a car driven by the unidentified man. Both vehicles slammed into the center divider and burst into flames, officials said.

The unidentified man was trapped in his car, which was stuck beneath the big-rig. Truong managed to crawl out of the truck and was taken to Western Medical Center-Santa Ana with major injuries.

The incident snarled traffic for about five miles in each direction. The freeway was reopened in both directions about 2:30 a.m. Thursday.

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mai.tran@latimes.com

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