Two fatal car crashes were reported on the county's Westside on Friday, including one where a 6-year-old boy was killed, the California Highway Patrol reported.
The first incident, a solo vehicle rollover, was reported at 4:05 a.m, on Interstate 5 north of Whitworth Road in the Santa Nella area. The victim, 6-year-old Aiden Santos, of Vallejo, was killed after being ejected from the van.
The crash happened after the driver, 28-year-old Aris Santos, of Vallejo, was traveling 60 mph in a 1999 Toyota Sienna van carrying three adults and four children in the slow lane.
Santos said he looked up and saw a U-Haul trailer directly ahead of him. He applied his brakes hard and swerved to the right, losing control of the van.
The van went down an embankment and rolled over several times, ejecting Aiden Santos and 5-year-old Arissa Santos.
The boy was pronounced dead at the scene, while the girl was flown to Memorial Medical Center in Modesto with major injuries. The other passengers were transported to Memorial Hospital in Los Banos with minor injuries.
CHP investigators said not all of the children were properly buckled into their seats. Officer Tom Melden said there were four children in a back seat with only three seat belts. He said the crash remains under investigation.
The other fatal crash was reported around 6 a.m. Friday when a 23-year-old Santa Nella man's car crashed into a big rig on Highway 140, the CHP reported.
The victim's name hasn't been released, pending notification of family or next-of-kin.
The crash happened after the victim was traveling in a 2006 Chrysler 300 at an unknown speed on southbound Whitworth Road approaching Highway 140.
Meanwhile, 30-year-old Hector Flores Sanchez of Stockton was driving a big rig pulling a 53-foot trailer eastbound on Highway 140 approaching Whitworth Road at 60 mph.
For unknown reasons, the driver of the Chrysler failed to halt at a posted stop sign. The driver of the big rig saw the Chrysler and applied his brakes, but was unable to stop in time.
The big-rig struck the right side of the Chrysler, pushing it about 150 feet east of the intersection, where both vehicles came to a rest.
The driver of the Chrysler was pronounced dead at the scene.
Reporter Victor A. Patton can be reached at (209) 385-2431 or firstname.lastname@example.org.