We are shocked and stunned at the events that opened up Mother’s Day Weekend. A weekend meant for celebration left us all a little shaken and appreciating not only our Mother’s but life in general. On Friday, May 9th, 2014, at approximately 4:20pm, A Toyota Four Runner driven by a Mother and her Daughter, came careening through the Telephone/Power Pole and into the On the Bus Productions Studio Driveway. The red truck, after rolling several times on it’s side, landed in the bushes headlights facing OTB’s Studio front wall and on the neighboring property. After hearing the horrific sounds that shook the entire studio’s foundation, Garrett Holloway, Vice-President of On the Bus, opened the Studio Door to find Corrie Vallance in the middle of the driveway near the back of the building screaming “Call 911!” Mic Allinger, a friend who was also inside the small shaken studio began dialing his phone while Garrett and Neighboring business, Marc Nocerino, Manager of Blue Ribbon Services, went running around the corner and towards the accident scene. Heroically they approached the upside down vehicle without a second thought, jumping over the live power lines and into the bushes that dwarfed the crumpled heap and smoking metal. They were determined to help the two women who were trapped inside the vehicle and screaming in horror for their lives. Struggling to get the truck’s door open, Garrett was able to reach in and release the seat belt of the driver. The passenger, screaming from the back seat was eventually helped out by the driver, her mother.
As the the truck laid in the bushes as a red mass of metal and debris, the power pole sat like a splintered toothpick precariously in the middle of the driveway. The several cars that were parked on the commercial lot at the time were trapped for hours. The power lines were on the ground and it was hard to tell after the wake whether the car was going to catch fire, but eventually did not. Placer County Sheriff was first on scene directing traffic and clearing up the crowd of cars that had pulled over right after the crash. They also took interviews of eye witnesses and searched for the Owner’s dog that apparently had been in the car at the time of the crash. The Chihuahua was remarked upon by a passer by who had stopped to help, stating they had the dog, but was never reported to the police and to our knowledge has still not been found.
It is still not clear as to why the women crashed. One would imagine that a crash of this magnitude would have been reported by some type of Local Media. From what the members of OTB & Blue Ribbon Services collectively gathered from sharing their eyewitness reports was that the vehicle started to slowly veer into oncoming traffic and then hit the side of the highway which started the Toyota Four Runner into a violent series of roll overs. One woman, employed at Blue Ribbon Services found herself terribly shaken as she explained that she had probably escaped death. She was on her way to check the mailbox which sits directly on the side of Hwy 49. She would have been hit by the uncontrolled vehicle if she was only a few seconds further in her journey.
On the Bus Productions was expecting several people at the time of the crash and folks ended up waiting more than 40 minutes to arrive due to the slow down of traffic. Their dedication to come to “OTB Underground”, a weekly music event, was undeniable appreciated by Hosts Corrie Vallance and Garrett Holloway. That night, On the Bus Productions hosted their first of many they say “Unplugged OTB Undergrounds” due to having no power in the building to equip electric guitars and amplifiers. Corrie Vallance, President of the OTB says, “It was a true success after what could have been a real tragedy. We really came to realize how much folks appreciate what we have created here. But overall, we are just thankful that no one was hurt.”
Driving with distractions can be deadly. We can’t imagine what in the world could have distracted this women from keeping her vehicle on the road, but we are very glad that she and her daughter survived the crash with minimal injuries. We hope that this event serves as a reminder to others to take the time to really pay attention to the road while driving. We would hate to think it was something like texting, but I guess we will never know. What we do now is this, Highway 49 in Auburn, CA is a dangerous route. We travel this road daily and see numerous distracted drivers, fender benders and close calls. We hope that the community will start recognizing how important it is to pay attention and take their time. It’s better to arrive alive.