A 51-year-old Gilroy man died after he was rear-ended on Highway 152, resulting in a four-car accident and injuries to several other Sunday evening travelers, according to authorities.
California Highway Patrol officers responded to the collision on Pacheco Pass Highway, just east of Bloomfield Avenue, about 8:35pm Sept. 22.
CHP investigators determined that Gonzalo Hernandez-Mendez, 51, of Gilroy, was driving a 1996 Toyota Tacoma east on Highway 152 when he slowed down to make a left turn into a private driveway, according to a press release. The driver of a 2007 Sterling tractor trailer, also driving east on Highway 152, approached the Tacoma but apparently did not see the vehicle slowing down in front of him.
As a result, the Sterling collided with the rear of the Tacoma, police said. This impact caused the Tacoma to move into the westbound lane of Highway 152, where the Tacoma collided with an oncoming 2018 Ford and 2019 Toyota Rav4, both of which were traveling westbound on the highway.
During the collision, Hernandez-Mendez was ejected from his vehicle and suffered fatal injuries, according to authorities. The Santa Clara County Coroner’s office identified Hernandez-Mendez on Monday.
Six occupants of the 2018 Ford suffered injuries, including two with major injuries. All six were transported to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, according to authorities.
Occupants and drivers of the other vehicles involved in the Sept. 22 collision suffered minor to moderate injuries, police said.
Highway 152 was closed for about four hours Sunday night while CHP officers investigated the collision.
No arrests or citations were issued in relation to the collision. Investigators do not think drugs or alcohol were a factor in the crash.