Highway 120 crash victim identified

4:35 PM, Aug 13, 2013   |    comments
Fatal crash on Highway 120 in Manteca, Aug. 12, 2013
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MANTECA, CA - A stretch of eastbound Highway 120 in Manteca was closed for more than three hours Monday following a fatal collision involving two big rigs and four vehicles, according to the California Highway Patrol.

One person died and five were injured, CHP Officer James Smith said.

Edward Kopech, 53, from Houston, Texas, who was behind the wheel of one of the involved cars, was identified by the San Joaquin County coroner as the deceased.

According to Smith, the 40-year-old driver of a 1995 Volvo semi traveling 45-55 mph failed to stop for cars ahead of him that had stopped for traffic. He first struck a 1999 Dodge directly in front of him. That car was pushed into another lane and the semi continued forward, hitting Kopech's 2013 Chevy. That car and the semi struck three other vehicles in a chain reaction.

Three other drivers suffered injuries as did two passengers in cars. The injuries ranged from major to minor. All were taken to area hospitals.

The eastbound lanes of 120 between S. Main Street and Union Street were cleared just after 6:30 p.m. The crash was first reported at 3:16 p.m.


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