Sheriff’s deputy slams four parked cars
July 30, 2008
By KAREN VELIE and DANIEL BLACKBURN
A San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s deputy on administrative leave drove into four parked vehicles before flipping and rolling his pickup truck in a July 19 mishap.
Deputy Bryan Goossens was northbound on Traffic Way in Atascadero at 8:50 a.m. when the chain-reaction collision occurred.
Currently on paid administrative leave in an unrelated matter, Goossens was not ticketed or charged by Atascadero police officers.
Goossens told police that he lost control of his GMC truck while reaching for a water bottle. The truck first sideswiped a green Ford Taurus, totaling the parked vehicle, according to a police report obtained by CalCoastNews.com. Goossens then crashed into a grey Plymouth sedan parked on the east side of Traffic Way south of Rosario Avenue, and then into the rear of a silver Ford Explorer. The impact propelled the Explorer approximately 61 feet into the rear of a blue Ford Taurus.
Upon colliding with the Explorer, Goossens’ truck became airborne and rolled over twice before coming to a rest 90 feet from the point of first impact, according to the report. “Goossens caused this collision by failing to drive on the right half of the roadway,” the report concluded.
“There was no indication of excessive speed or alcohol use,” said Atascadero Police Lt. Brian Dana, who noted the incident did not warrant drug or alcohol testing. “We don’t give tickets following accidents unless the driver has no insurance or license. This appears to be inattention.”
Along the 5000 block area of Traffic Way, where the incident occurred, the posted speed limit is 35 miles per hour.
According to the police report, witness Iris Florez was traveling south on Traffic Way when she noticed the deputy’s truck “approaching her at ‘normal’ speeds.”
However, Florez later told UncoveredSLO.com she first became aware of the GMC truck as it hit the first Ford Taurus. She called 911, and then offered her assistance to Goossens, who, according to Florez, wanted to move his truck.
“He wanted to, but I told him to wait for the police to come,” Florez said. “He was complaining about his head, he asked me to check it because it hurt too much. He was shaking a lot. I think he was in shock. His leg was bleeding. He didn’t want to go to the hospital.”
Following the accident, Goossens’ truck was towed and the remaining four damaged vehicles were left at the scene, according to the police report.
Goossens did not return a request for comment.