Big Rig Crashes Into Mobile Home Park

Understatement of the day: "It was an interesting experience"

Authorities said a 16-year-old boy might have been driving a big rig when it crashed on the eastbound Foothill (210) Freeway in Lake View Terrace. The truck went off the freeway into a mobile home park Monday morning.

Four brothers -- ages 20, 16, 14 and 3 -- were in the rig when it crashed.

Investigators said an unlicensed 16-year-old might have been the driver. Authorities said they believe the 16-year-old driver fell asleep at the wheel.

Authorities said the occupants of the big rig initially told investigators that the 20-year-old was driving. They later admitted the 16-year-old was driving, authorities said.

CHP Officer Francisco Villalobos said it appears the 20-year-old got tired and let the 16-year-old take the wheel as the rig drove some 300 miles from Livingston south to Ontario.

The crash occurred at 3:39 a.m. in the 12000 block of Foothill Boulevard. Homeowner Mark Leon said he saw the headlights of the truck as it neared his home, just off the freeway.

"It was an interesting experience," Leon said. "There was a rumbling sound. It sounded like an earthquake. My daughter's bedroom and our bedroom would have been taken clearly out.

"The state needs to build a sound wall around the perimeter of this park. This happened once before with a semi barreling through with a load of chocolate syrup."

California DMV: Commercial Driver's License Requirements

The truck involved in Tuesday's crash was hauling whipped cream.

The crash prompted closure of two lanes of the eastbound freeway at Foothill Boulevard. Lanes are expected to remain closed until about 3 p.m.

According to police, firefighters initially thought there were two children trapped or missing in the wrecked cab of the big rig and an urban search-and-rescue team was summoned. Search technicians spent about one hour taking the cab apart, found no one inside, and then learned the 16- and 3-year-old received a ride north to Castaic.

Firefighters and other workers at the scene were waiting for a heavy equipment hauler to move the wreckage. The big rig came to rest some 50 feet from the freeway guard rail on a slope and upside down.

Earlier, a police helicopter was requested but there was too much fog.

The big rig may have been hauling grocery boxes.


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