Driver Killed, Man and Woman Rescued After Motorhome Crashes Into Sylmar House

Police were questioning whether the driver had medical problems.

A man and woman were rescued from their Sylmar house after a motorhome crashed into the side of it Thursday night, killing the driver, authorities said.

The crash occurred at 11:39 p.m. on the 13600 block of North Borden Avenue, said Margaret Stewart of the Los Angeles Fire Department.

The motorhome crashed into the master bathroom of the house, and continued into the master bedroom until it had traveled about 10 feet inside the home, according to Los Angeles Police Department Detective Bill Bustos.

The driver was James Digaetano, 52, the Los Angeles County coroner's office said. He was living out of the motorhome with his small dog, and would park on different streets to sleep overnight, Bustos added. 

Police said Digaetano was traveling west on Roxford Street with his dog when he veered off the road and crashed into the side of the North Borden residence around 11:20 p.m.

"We don't see any evidence of pre-impact skid marks, we don't have any other vehicles involved in this collision," Bustos said.

Digaetano was pronounced dead at the scene, police said. The dog was injured in the crash, and was given to one of Digaetano's friends or relatives so it could be taken for medical treatment, Bustos said. It was expected to survive. 


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The man and woman inside the house were unharmed but were taken to the hospital as a precaution after they were overcome by strong natural gas fumes.

Bustos said the Los Angeles County coroner's office would conduct an autopsy, which could determine if the driver had any medical conditions. Investigators had not ruled out the possibility that the driver may have fallen asleep while driving. 

The accident remains under investigation.

City News Service contributed to this report.

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