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Weekend Head-on HWY 4 Crash A Double Fatal

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Angels Camp, CA — A head-on crash on Highway 4 Saturday morning in Angels Camp involving six people suffering major injuries and requiring four air ambulances is now a double fatal.

As earlier reported here, the wreck happened around 10:30 a.m. east of Pool Station Road and forced the closure of a section of the highway for about an hour. The CHP reports the deceased are a couple from Chowchilla; the driver, 60-year-old Jeffery Heffington, and his wife, 58-year-old Shelia.

San Andreas Unit CHP officer Toby Butzler details that the Heffington’s 2019 Toyota Rav4 was hit head-on by a 2016 RX350 Lexus, driven by 20-year-old Haomiao Zhang of Davis. Zhang was traveling eastbound and while coming around a curve his vehicle crossed over the double yellow lines and into the path of the Toyota, according to Butzler. The impact sent the Lexus into a traffic sign causing the sedan to overturn.

“No drugs or alcohol. It just looks like either unsafe speed or failure to remain in the traffic lane,” indicates Butzler.

Along with Zhang were three passengers. All were trapped in the Lexus and had to be freed by emergency crews. Butzler recounts, “All four were flown from the scene for treatment of major injuries. The two occupants [the Heffingtons] of the Toyota were initially taken to local area hospitals, but unfortunately, both of them passed away.”

Highway 4 was closed for about an hour while the air ambulances landed, and investigators canvased the scene. Then there was one-way traffic for about a half-hour as a tow crew worked to clear the wreckage and debris. Regarding any charges stemming from the collision, Butzler says Zhang could face manslaughter charges, but at this time the crash remains under investigation.

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