Final accident report in Bishop fatalities still pending

On August 9, three vehicles crashed in a violent wreck south of Bishop that claimed three lives. A fourth death followed two


August accident scene on 395 south of Bishop

months later. The final report on the cause of the accidents is still pending with MAIT, the Multidisciplinary Investigation Team of the Highway Patrol.

Immediately after the fiery crash another terrible accident happened at a sanctioned off road competition in Lucerne. Eight people died and MAIT was called out to investigate. Other accidents diverted attention from the final report on Bishop’s incident.

Locally, officers said MAIT wanted to reconstruct the accident perfectly to know what happened. Information revealed after the August wreck indicated that a teen-aged girl was at the wheel of a southbound Ford Expedition when the car veered off onto the shoulder and spun out of control. The vehicle sharply veered over into the northbound lanes, burst into flames and struck a van carrying young athletes. A former cheer-leading coach, the driver, was killed. Two teens in the SUV died and a track coach was critically injured and died two months later.

What caused the young driver to lose control and roll into the oncoming lanes of traffic? That’s the question that many hope the final MAIT report will answer.

CHP Officer Dennis Cleland said one of the accident victims planned to come up to the scene. That individual is recovering well and trying to move forward, beyond that terrible night.

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