Officers on Saturday morning arrested a Southern California man on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter after his car struck a pickup, which then rolled over on Highway 99 in Modesto, killing the pickup's driver, the California Highway Patrol reported.
The highway's northbound traffic was backed up for almost four hours as officers investigated the wreck.
The 31-year-old man pronounced dead at the scene was from Sisters, Ore., according to the CHP. Officials did not release his name pending family notification. The man was driving a 2003 Ford pickup.
Kevin Amilcar Orellana, 20, of Huntington Park was driving a 2002 Toyota and was not injured.
Orellana was arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence, according to the CHP. He was being held at the Stanislaus County Jail on Saturday afternoon, and his bail was set at $50,000.
Drugs and alcohol did not appear to be a factor in the collision, the CHP reported.
No other occupants were in the vehicles, and both drivers were wearing their seat belts.
The crash occurred about 8:30 a.m. in the northbound lanes of Highway 99, just north of Crows Landing Road.
The CHP said Orellana was driving his car at a high rate of speed, and he was using all three lanes to pass vehicles.
The pickup was traveling about 65 mph in the left lane as the Toyota approached from the right lane.
The CHP said there were vehicles in front of Orellana so he tried to pass them by moving to the left.
Orellana lost control of his car and entered the left lane, hitting the pickup's right side, according to the CHP. The pickup rolled over and came to rest on its roof.
The CHP said the car spun counterclockwise and came to rest in the center median.
Northbound traffic was backed up on the highway for almost four hours until all three lanes were reopened.
Bee staff writer Rosalio Ahumada can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 578-2394.