PALMDALE – A 33-year-old Palmdale man died Thursday after crashing his car into a parked California Highway Patrol vehicle that was involved in a traffic stop, authorities said.
The collision occurred around 6:55 a.m. on 50th Street east, just south of Avenue P in Palmdale, according to California Highway Patrol Officer Gil Hernandez.
A CHP officer had stopped a 2005 Toyota Camry for a vehicle code violation and was preparing to write a citation when the officer heard tires screeching from behind, Hernandez said.
“The CHP officer saw a 2000 Ford Taurus… traveling out of the control coming towards the rear end of the black and white patrol vehicle,” Hernandez said. “The Ford Taurus struck the rear end of the patrol vehicle, pushing the patrol vehicle forward; the patrol vehicle struck the CHP officer, launching him into the dirt wash.”
The patrol vehicle then struck the Toyota Camry that was stopped for the vehicle code violation, Hernandez said.
The Toyota Camry’s driver, 52-year-old Lancaster resident Alexander M. Arcega, sustained minor injuries and complained of back pain, Hernandez said.
The CHP officer was transported to Palmdale Regional Medical Center, where he was treated and released, Hernandez said.
“[The driver of the Ford Taurus] was transported to Antelope Valley Hospital with major injuries and he succumbed to his injuries a few hours later,” Hernandez said. “At this time, this traffic collision is under investigation.”
Investigators are still trying to determine how fast the Ford Taurus was traveling and why its driver lost control, Hernandez added.
The driver’s name has not yet been released pending next of kin notification. He is a 33-year-old Palmdale resident, Hernandez said.
UPDATED 9/28/14: The deceased has been identified as 33-year-old Robert Steven Nemila, according to the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office.