Early on Sunday morning a young woman was headed towards San Jose on Highway 101. She was not a fan of driving on the freeway and usually tried to avoid doing so. She had been a car that had a close call last year on the same highway, on her way to San Francisco. But this morning she was following her fiancé who was driving in the car ahead of her.
The fatal accident began as she was driving in the right hand lane. Another car, described as an older brown Ford, smashed into the rear of her Honda at a high rate of speed. The Ford fled the scene immediately. The woman's car was damaged and immobilized, she had been knocked into the center lane and the taillights that could have warned oncoming drivers had been destroyed.
Her fiancé had seen the initial collision in his rearview mirror and began to pull off the highway. The California Highway Patrol explained that the driver of the Dodge Caravan had no way to see the disabled Honda in the center lane after its lights were knocked out. The Dodge smashed into the Honda. The woman was later pronounced dead at the scene.
The woman who lost her life in the accident was described as being involved in her church and close to her family. She was keeping the engagement largely a secret until Thanksgiving when she was planning to surprise her family.
Law enforcement authorities continue to search for the driver of the Ford. While this investigation continues it is hard not to consider how the outcome might have been different if the driver of the Ford would have taken the responsible and reasonable step of stopping and turning on his hazard lights after the crash, rather than running away.
Source: San Jose Mercury News, "Police hunt for driver in a fatal hit-and-run on Highway 101," Joshua Melvin, Sept. 28, 2011