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Roads & Traffic

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Jack Mitchell
2 days ago

Memorial Day weekend, one of the busiest travel weekends of the year, is the traditional start of summer and a time when more travelers and especially families will be on the go. When California Highway Patrol (CHP) officers take to the roads over the Memorial Day weekend, they will be working to save lives through seat belt education and enforcement.

To help keep motorists safe, the CHP will be conducting its annual Memorial Day Maximum Enforcement Period (MEP) throughout the state. The MEP begins at 6:01 p.m. on Friday, May 27,...

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Bill Lavallie
2 days ago
Both vehicles sustained considerable damage. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Bill Lavallie
An early morning collision Wednesday between a VW sedan and a Dodge SUV sent the driver of the VW to a local trauma center via helicopter. The VW, heading north on Pine Grove Volcano Road began a left hand turn into a driveway in front of a Dodge SUV heading south. The impact of the crash was severe and both vehicles sustained considerable damage. The driver of the Dodge did not need transport to the hospital. [Read more]
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Bill Lavallie
3 days ago
Both vehicles sustained considerable damage. ALD photo by Bill Lavallie
An early morning collision between a VW sedan and a Dodge SUV sent the driver of the VW to a local trauma center via helicopter. The VW, heading north on Pine Grove Volcano Road began a left hand turn into a driveway in front of a Dodge SUV heading south. The impact of the crash was severe and both vehicles sustained considerable damage. The driver of the Dodge did not need transport to the hospital. [Read more]
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Via Press Release
1 week ago

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has designated May 23 to June 5, 2016, as the national “Click It or Ticket” enforcement period. CHP and other law enforcement agencies in Amador County, and throughout California, will be looking for drivers and passengers who don’t buckle up.

“Click It or Ticket” debuted in California in 2005, and since then the state’s seat belt use rate has increased from 92.5 percent in 2005 to a record high of 97.4 percent in 2014, representing over 1.5 million more vehicle occupants who...

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Via Press Release
03/31/2016 11:58 AM

On the evening of St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, the Amador Office of the California Highway Patrol conducted sobriety checks in Jackson, across from the post office.

The westbound lane was set up as the control lane and all traffic in that direction was being stopped at random intervals to talk with officers.

The operation was conducted from 7 p.m. to 12 a.m. Officers made contact with 536 vehicles. During that time, there were two suspected DUI arrests.

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Guest Commentator
03/31/2016 11:57 AM

Last Thursday, around 3:30 p.m., a dead man was found inside a vehicle near Rail Road Flat Elementary School. Calaveras Sheriff’s Deputies were sent to a trailer that was partially blocking Rail Road Flat Road near Rail Road Flat Elementary School. When deputies arrived on the scene, they found the dead man inside the vehicle.

Sergeant Anthony Eberhardt said that there was nothing suspicious about the death and that there was no foul play involved.

Calaveras County Coroner Kevin Raggio said the cause of death has not been...

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Bill Lavallie
03/17/2016 12:22 PM
Work crews and equipment took hours to clear the boulders and mud from Old Highway 49, north of Amador City. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Bill Lavallie
A massive rock and mud slide closed Old Hwy 49 north of Amador City Monday. Crews needed many hours to remove the huge boulders that spilled out of the hillside east of the old highway. One-way traffic was the order of the day. [Read more]
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Bill Lavallie
03/10/2016 1:09 PM
Debris is strewn across Highway 49/88 from last Friday’s crash near the Kennedy Mine Overlook. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Bill Lavallie

Last Friday afternoon, March 4, a three-car crash on the Jackson Grade near the Kennedy Mine Overlook caused a massive backup. A Toyota sports car traveling southbound in the wrong direction down the hill. The Toyota was actually traveling south in the northbound lane.

The Toyota struck a van traveling up the hill in the northerly direction on Highway 49/88.

A GMC flatbed truck traveling behind the van, trying to avoid the accident, attempted to go between the two vehicles and struck the Toyota. The impact then pushed the car...

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Bill Lavallie
02/11/2016 1:32 PM
Traffic was upset for a while after two vehicles collided at Highway 49 & Clinton Rd., in Jackson. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Bill Lavallie

Early Tuesday morning, a pickup truck and a sedan collided at the intersection of Hwy 49 and Clinton Road in Jackson. Both drivers stated that they had the green light.

There was considerable damage to the sedan and the pickup was moderately damaged. Both vehicles were towed from the scene.

None of the vehicle occupants had serious injuries.

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Bill Lavallie
02/04/2016 12:54 PM
ALD photo by Bill Lavallie

Around 4:55 p.m., last Friday afternoon, a vehicle turning onto China Graveyard Road, in Jackson, lost control on the wet payment and rolled into a ditch along the side of the road.

The driver of the vehicle did not sustain any injuries, though the vehicle was moderately damaged. Speed and the wet pavement may have been contributing factors to this crash.

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Via Press Release
02/04/2016 12:56 PM

For the first time since 2003, the Super Bowl is coming to California. As always, the safety of the public at the game and on our state roads will remain the top priority of the California Highway Patrol (CHP). The public can expect to see increased law enforcement presence on and around February 7, 2016.

“The Super Bowl is America’s most-watched national sporting event and California is fortunate to be the host this year,” CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow said. “With days of events leading up to the game, the Bay Area will see an influx...

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Bill Lavallie
01/28/2016 12:54 PM

Around 10:45 a.m., last Friday, a Chevrolet pickup was entering onto Highway 88 from Tabeaud Road, headed west. The driver failed to notice a sedan traveling east from Pine Grove and did not yield to the vehicle.

The sedan struck the truck in the center rear, causing it to flip over and skid into the westbound lane of the highway. The sedan traveled a short distance and came to rest int the westbound lane.

The driver of the sedan was removed from the vehicle and taken by ambulance to Sutter Amador Hospital to be evaluated. The...

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Bill Lavallie
01/21/2016 12:47 PM
This vehicle was last seen hanging precariously over the edge of a steep slope near Pine Grove. Ledger Dispatch photo by Bill Lavallie

On Friday, January 15, a call came in to the Sheriff’s Department stating that a car had struck a tree on Highway 88, at Taves Road, in Pine Grove. Upon arrival at the scene, first responders found a Subaru balanced precariously on the edge of the road, ready to roll down the embankment.

According to an eyewitness, the driver of the vehicle did not notice that the vehicle in front of him was stopping to make a left-hand turn onto Taves. When he did notice, he braked and steered hard to the right and skirted the side of the road,...

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Eric Winslow
01/14/2016 11:12 AM
A Douglas fir and a car bumper mix it up on Highway 16. Photo by Eric Winslow
Last month before the holidays, I was driving westbound on Highway 16 after dark. My wife and 15-year-old son were in the car. It was just another standard trip to Sacramento, but what happened to us happened in a crazy unpredictable instant. Even though I was traveling at the posted speed limit of 65 m.p.h., it was still too fast to avoid the Christmas tree lying in the middle of the highway which jumped into the headlight stream. Someone had probably lost the 5-foot Doug fir off the back of their truck, and now I had to deal with... [Read more]
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Bill Lavallie
01/14/2016 12:09 PM
Amazingly, no one was injured in this crash. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Bill Lavallie
A 95-year-old driver traveling along New York Ranch road attempted to turn into the Jackson Rancheria around 8 a.m. Tuesday. He lost control of the vehicle and cut the wheel hard then causing the vehicle to veer into the woods adjacent to the entrance road. The driver was not injured in the crash. [Read more]
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Eric Winslow
01/14/2016 11:16 AM
Photo by Bill Lavallie.
On 12 January, at about 11:30 a.m. Thomas Collins, 74, and Emma Kitchen, 59, of Stockton were traveling westbound on Highway 88, just approaching Buena Vista Road. Kitchen became concerned with Collins' high rate of speed and his ability to negotiate the curves on the highway. She asked Collins, her boyfriend, if he was okay. He nodded, then turned right, careening off the highway. The vehicle went up a dirt embankment, then through a field of small trees and brush. After traveling about 500 feet, the car overturned, flew into the... [Read more]
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Via Press Release
01/07/2016 11:18 AM

Caltrans will replace its current traffic-data-capturing equipment to better collect information and digital images on the State Highway System, thanks to a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The $400,000 Model Inventory of Roadway Elements data grant will be used to update the department’s data collection program’s equipment and software, which help the department collect information along the State Highway System. This data informs traffic safety...

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Via Press Release
01/07/2016 11:09 AM
Two accidents occurred in Calaveras County on New Year’s Eve, 2015, one of which eventuated in a fatality. The first accident occurred at 6 p.m., in San Andreas, when Terry Lee Novak, of Valley Springs, was traveling eastbound on Highway 26 east of Yeaton Lane at 55 miles per hour in a 2001 Chevrolet. For unknown reasons, Novak make an unsafe turn, running off the roadway, and heading down the eastbound embankment. This resulted in the vehicle turning over onto its roof. The driver went to Mark Twain Medical Center with minor... [Read more]
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Bill Lavallie
12/29/2015 12:21 PM
Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Bill Lavallie

A possible DUI occurred Monday evening, December 28, around 6:30 p.m. The driver of a pickup truck was traveling west on Highway 88 near the Irish Town/Clinton Road cuttoff and lost control of his vehicle. The vehicle then drifted to the left side of the road, rolled over and landed in the ditch on the north side of the road.

CHP on scene restrained the driver after he refused to cooperate with commands in an attempt to conduct a sobriety test. The driver was then taken into custody for suspicion of DUI.

No one was injured in the...

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Bill Lavallie
12/22/2015 11:41 AM
Staff at the facility evacuated part of the building until an inspector could verify that there was no structural failure. Amador Ledger Dispatch photos by Bill Lavallie

Friday afternoon around 2 p.m. a 911 call came in stating that there was a truck on the roof of the Kit Carson Nursing & Rehabilitation Center. Responders arrived to find that a pickup truck had rolled from the upper parking lot of 817 Court Street down the hill and onto the roof of the facility.

The driver appeared to have failed to set the truck in park and left the vehicle. Fortunately, there were no injuries as a result of this accident. There was damage to the vehicle and to the roof of the building.

Staff at the facility...

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