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Man dies in solo pickup crash into almond tree on Elliot Avenue; cause still unknown

California Highway Patrol investigators are unsure what caused a 46-year-old man to crash into an almond tree on Monday, killing him.

The accident happened around 6:50 p.m. Monday on Elliot Avenue, east of Buhach Road. Ferriera said the man’s 1984 Chevrolet pickup veered off the south edge of the roadway and struck a barbed-wire fence before crashing into an almond tree.

The victim, identified as Lonnie Curt Bedard of Merced, was found unresponsive upon the arrival of investigators and died at Mercy Medical Center Merced. Ferriera said alcohol does not appear to be a factor in the collision. “We’re probably going to have to wait for an autopsy to see if there is anything that factored into the collision,” Ferriera said