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Local News

CHP Still Looking for Answers in Highway 101 Wreck that Killed Orange County Woman

Investigators say flatbed truck crossed over median and struck Brea woman's pickup, but are still probing why vehicle swerved

Investigators are still trying to determine why a flatbed truck and trailer swerved across a highway median west of Goleta last month, slamming into a pickup traveling in the opposite direction and killing its driver, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Lois Campbell, 64, of Brea, who was driving the 2007 Ford pickup, was declared dead at the scene, and her passenger, her 68-year-old husband, Tom, suffered major injuries, the CHP reported.

Campbell was southbound on Highway 101 near Dos Pueblos Ranch on July 9 when a northbound 2008 International Durastar hauling agricultural containers veered across a vegetated median and collided with her vehicle.

Investigators have concluded that the flatbed — driven by  Sergio Garcilazo, 51, of Santa Maria — "made an unsafe turning movement," according to CHP Officer Jim Hoskins.

However, what precipitated that movement remains under investigation, said Hoskins, who added that a definitive cause likely will be released early next month.

"All we know for sure is that in fact he did make an unsafe turning movement," Hoskins told Noozhawk.

Garcilazo, who suffered minor injuries in the crash, told investigators at the scene that his brakes locked up, according to Santa Barbara County fire Capt. David Sadecki, but the CHP would not confirm that.

Garcilazo was driving the flatbed for Greenheart Farms in Arroyo Grande.

Thus far, Garcilazo has not been cited or charged in the accident, Hoskins said.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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