4 Killed After SUV Plunges off California Bridge

Lorenz Duchamps
By Lorenz Duchamps
June 18, 2020US News
4 Killed After SUV Plunges off California Bridge
(L-R) California residents Cecilia Ayala, 22, of Hayward and Perla Navarro, 19, of Richmond in file photos. (GoFundMe)

Four young adults were killed in a horrific car accident Tuesday night in Northern California, according to multiple reports.

The victims were identified by the Contra Costa County coroner as Perla Navarro, 19, of Richmond; Kyle Erickson, 19, of Pittsburg; Christopher Mata, 21, of Rodeo; and Cecilia Ayala, 22, of Hayward, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

A nearby driver recorded the accident with his dashcam camera, and the video was later shared on YouTube.

In the video, the driver can be seen losing control over the SUV, which plunged off the Carquinez Bridge near San Francisco. The car plummeted more than 200 feet, instantly killing all on board, officials said.

The portion of the video when the SUV hits the wall and goes over the bridge’s rails is not shown as the video stopped before the SUV went over the side. The car reportedly went down and hit a parked freight train upon falling, California Highway Patrol officials said.

The bridge was partly closed as investigators worked the scene. All the closed-off lanes and sections of the bridge reopened again just before 10:30 p.m., CHP said.

Officials said Navarro was driving the SUV at the time it lost control. She was reported to have been two months pregnant, KTVU reported.

NTD Photo
Perla Navarro, 19, of Richmond, California in a file photo. (GoFundMe)

A GoFundMe page was set up for both Navarro and Ayala to support their families with the funeral expenses.

Krystal Jennings, one of Ayala’s colleagues, set up the page and described the 22-year-old Hayward woman as an “incredible human being that had nothing but kindness in her heart.”

“I was fortunate enough to work with her one-on-one these last few weeks so I got to witness firsthand how beautiful she was and how much love she had to offer the world,” Jennings wrote on the page. “She was always so loving, so genuine, and wanted so badly to be the best version of herself. She was always so positive, never judgmental, and always smiling. We need more people like her in the world.”

Navarro was described on her GoFundMe page as a woman with the “passion to help others.” She had just graduated from high school and had plans to study psychology and was already taking college courses.

NTD Photo
Perla Navarro, 19, of Richmond, California after her high school graduation in a file photo. (GoFundMe)

“Her dream was [going] to college to be able to open a psychiatric clinic that specialized in helping at-risk youth,” her page reads.

CHP officials said the cause of the crash remains under investigation.

“We don’t know if it was due to high speed or related to traffic issues,” a CHP officer said.

Tuesday night’s crash is the third reported incident where a car has gone over the barrier near the bridge this year, according to KTVU.

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