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Head-on crash on Sierra College Blvd. leaves one dead, one in critical condition

By: Brandon Darnell, News Messenger Reporter
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By Brandon Darnell A head-on collision Wednesday afternoon on Sierra College Boulevard near Twelve Bridges Road claimed the life of 66-year-old Delores Linville of Lincoln, said Kelly Baraga, spokeswoman for CHP. A second driver, 66-year-old David Spencer of Lincoln, was airlifted to Sutter Roseville Medical Center and he was listed in critical condition, said Robin Montgomery, spokeswoman for Sutter Hospital. Spencer’s injuries included seven cracked ribs on his right side as well as a fractured right femur, Baraga said. At 12:20 p.m., the two vehicles on Sierra College collided, according to Baraga, one driver drifted into the southbound lane and struck the other. Both vehicles spun, and ended up blocking the road. Spencer was driving a Ford Explorer, and Linville was at the wheel of a Buick. There were no passengers in either vehicle, Baraga said. “It doesn’t appear, at this point, that there was any excessive speed involved,” Baraga said. “The typical speeds between 50 and 55mph would mean a closing speed in excess of 100 mph.” "We responded to it, since it came in at Twelve Bridges and Sierra College, and that could be in the city," said Lincoln Fire Chief Dave Whitt, adding that it was Lincoln firefighters who extricated both drivers. Linville had passed away by the time paramedics arrived 10 minutes later, and Spencer was drifting in and out of consciousness, according to the CHP spokeswoman. Rachel Wooden, CalFire’s spokeswoman, confirmed that several engines had been sent but could not release further details at 3 p.m. Wednesday. “At this point, we have no witnesses who saw the crash itself,” Baraga said. Baraga added that most of the damage was found in the southbound lane. The road was still closed due to debris, leaked oil and gasoline from the cars at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday and Baraga said it could remain closed for two more hours while the accident was cleared. The Lincoln Police Department directed traffic while the road remained closed. Despite the white cross erected off the road nearby, dedicated to a previous accident victim, Baraga said that that stretch of Sierra College Boulevard is not particularly dangerous, as the lanes are wide and drivers typically adhere to the warning signs. Since 2000, there have been four fatal collisions, according to CHP records. In 2007, there were five injury crashes, and three so far this year. “That’s pretty low,” Baraga said, adding that Highway 65, Highway 193 and Auburn-Folsom Road all have higher accident and fatality rates. “I think this is just an unfortunate accident,” Baraga said.