Los Banos woman seriously hurt in car vs. big rig crash

A 30-year-old Los Banos woman is in stable condition after suffering serious injuries in a two-car collision Friday outside Dos Palos.

The crash was reported around 4:45 p.m. on Merrill Avenue, near Brannon Avenue, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Eduardo Ramirez, 20, of Dos Palos, had stopped at a stop sign on eastbound Merrill Avenue in a 1994 Honda. Meanwhile, 45-year-old Ascencion Gutierrez of Kerman was driving a 2003 Freightliner pulling two trailers filled with garlic northbound on Brannon Avenue at 55 mph.

Ramirez then drove into the intersection directly in front of the big rig, and Gutierrez was unable to avoid a collision. The front of the big rig crashed directly into the Honda's passenger door. The big rig overturned onto the west shoulder of Brannon Avenue. The Honda came to a rest on its wheels in a field on the northwest corner of Brannon and Merrill avenues.

Gutierrez escaped from the big rig before it burst into flames and became fully engulfed, according to the CHP.

A passenger inside the Honda, 30-year-old Paulina Luna of Los Banos, was taken Doctors Medical Center of Modesto with major injuries to her right leg and major head trauma. She was listed in stable condition on Sunday.

Gutierrez and Ramirez were both taken to Memorial Hospital Los Banos and treated for minor injuries.

— Sun-Star staff