Monday, November 23, 2015

Names Released in Recent Road Deaths, Heavy Fog a Factor

Posted By on Mon, Nov 23, 2015 at 3:49 PM

click to enlarge chp.jpg
Heavy fog is being blamed for the death of a 43-year old McKinleyville woman, Cassandra Rogers, who was crossing U.S. Highway 101 northbound on foot when she was struck by a vehicle driven by Dorvin Valgene Phillips, 80, also of McKinleyville. Rogers was wearing dark clothing and apparently went unseen by Phillips until it was too late to react.

California Highway Patrol Officer Matt Harvey said Phillips did not appear to be under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. A toxicology report on Rogers will not be available for several weeks. Harvey added that the area in which Rogers was struck, just north of Giuntoli Lane, is a popular crossing spot for pedestrians despite the presence of an overpass. 

"This is about the time of year we really need to start slowing down and thinking about pedestrians and wildlife," said Harvey. "Wednesday is one of the biggest travel days of the year. We have to look out for one another."

Rogers' death marks the latest in what could be a record number of road deaths for 2015. Her death is the 28th for the year. The driver in last Tuesday's big rig death was also recently identified by the county coroner's office as a 29-year old man from Stockton, Yang Nhya. Investigators do not yet know why Nhya's commercial vehicle left the road and overturned. 
From the California Highway Patrol:

Arcata, California – On the evening of Sunday, November 22, a 2009 Chevy Malibu was traveling on US-101 Northbound, north of Giuntoli Lane, when it struck a pedestrian who was walking within the traffic lanes.

Just before 9:00 p.m., CHP officers responded to a call of a pedestrian who was standing in the roadway on US-101 Northbound, north of Giuntoli Lane. Moments later, a 2009 Chevy Malibu, driven by 80 year old Dorvin Valgene Phillips of McKinleyville, collided with the pedestrian. Due to heavy fog and the pedestrian wearing dark clothing, Phillips did not have time to react and was unable to avoid a collision with the pedestrian. The right front of the Chevy struck the pedestrian. As a result of this collision, the pedestrian sustained fatal injuries. Phillips was transported by ground ambulance to Mad River Community Hospital as a precautionary. Alcohol or drugs are not suspected to be a factor in this collision. The California Highway Patrol Humboldt Area is investigating this traffic collision.

The California Highway Patrol would like to take this unfortunate opportunity to remind motorist if you’re driving in fog to keep the headlights on low beam, don’t stop on the roadway (except in emergency), move away from a stalled or disabled vehicle and watch for CHP pace vehicles which may be guiding traffic through the fog. Consider turning off the road and waiting until the fog eases.

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About The Author

Linda Stansberry

Linda Stansberry

Linda Stansberry was a staff writer of the North Coast Journal from 2015 to 2018. She is a frequent contributor the the Journal and our other publications.

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