Man ejected from car in Fresno Co rollover crash

FRESNO COUNTY, Calif.

It happened just before 7 p.m. Saturday evening on Minnewawa near Washington in Fresno County. The Highway Patrol said the driver was in surgery Saturday night. They said it appeared the driver lost control while trying to turn west on Washington from Minnewawa at high speed.

The Pontiac Grand Am rolled over several times, uprooted a tree, and tore through a front yard during the crash.

"He was in a skid, a side skid when he collided into the tree. When he collided into the tree he sheered the tree off at the base and then overturned," said David Salcido with the California Highway Patrol.

Crash investigators said the man was not wearing his seatbelt and was thrown a considerable distance from his car. They said the driver suffered serious head trauma after being ejected.

"He was laying over on the cement, right here in my neighbor's yard. He was unconscious and paramedics were working on him," said eyewitness Michael Leader. The crash happened right in front of Leader's home.

Once the Pontiac was removed from the property, it revealed the destruction the car left behind. The car took out an old tree, a mailbox, and dug out tire tracks from one end of the yard to the other.

"We've only lived here about a week, we just moved in. So this was a heck of a homecoming present," said Leader.

CHP investigators say witnesses reported seeing the car speed north on Minnewawa before the crash.

"Had the driver been wearing his seatbelt the severity of his injuries would have been greatly decreased if not avoided all together," said Salcido.

The CHP said an officer has not been able to contact that driver, so they're unsure at this point whether alcohol or drugs played a roll in this wreck.

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