Woman killed in 3 car crash on Highway 46

April 30, 2017

Correction: The name, age and sex of the injured person in the Highway 46 crash was incorrectly reported by the CHP. Leticia Lopez was the driver of the Mazda, not James Alvarado.

One person was killed and three were injured Sunday afternoon in a three car collision on Highway 46 west of Paso Robles, according to the California Highway Patrol.

At 3:35 p.m., Michelle Saunders, 71, of Seaside was headed eastbound on Highway 46 when her Mazda veered into the westbound lane directly in front of a tanker truck hauling 8,000 gallons of hot asphalt oil. The truck driver tried to avoid a collision, but crashed head-on into the Mazda.

The Mazda then spun back into the eastbound lane and collided with a Toyota driven by Leticia Lopez, 46, of Bakersfield. Saunders was killed in the collision and Lopez was injured. Emergency personnel transported Lopez to a local hospital with undisclosed injuries.

After colliding with the Mazda, the tanker became detached from its cab and rolled 65 feet down an embankment. The driver, 61-year-old Eduardo Calderon of Mendota and his passenger Lupe Calderon, both suffered minor injuries.

CHP officers are investigating the cause of the crash.

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The person killed was a Seaside woman.