Merced woman killed running across Highway 99 during traffic stop, CHP says

Local News
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A Merced woman was killed on Highway 99 near Atwater when she ran across the highway during a traffic stop Wednesday night, the California Highway Patrol said.

Around 8:40 p.m., a Merced area CHP unit was traveling north on Highway 99 south of Franklin Road when he observed a vehicle directly ahead unable to stay in its lane.

The officer initiated a traffic stop and the vehicle yielded to the right shoulder, north of Franklin Road.

CHP said the officer contacted the occupant, a 26-year-old driver, and could immediately detect an odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from inside the vehicle.

The officer returned to his patrol vehicle and requested an additional unit for a DUI evaluation.

While standing outside his vehicle, the officer observed the woman exit her vehicle and run across the northbound traffic lanes, CHP said.

The officer pursued the woman as she made her way across the center median where she ran across the southbound lanes of traffic.

After initially clearing the southbound lanes, the driver attempted to run back across the southbound traffic lanes, CHP said. While doing so, she was struck by a Honda traveling south. The Honda then collided with the Toyota.

Although life-saving measures were performed by officers, the driver was pronounced dead at the scene.

The occupants of the other vehicles were uninjured.

This collision remains under investigation.

Anyone with information should contact officer M. Carvajal at 209-356-6600. 

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