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Carrot spill causes traffic jam
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A Freightliner hauling a load of carrots overturned Tuesday morning, spilling the vegetables across southbound Highway 99 near Delhi.

The driver of the Freightliner, Daniel Rameriz Garcia, 29, of Cantua Creek,  sustained minor injuries after running into the back of a Toyota Yaris. The driver of the Toyota, Norberto Costa, 59, of Hilmar, was not injured in the crash, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The collision happened around 9 a.m. Tuesday on Highway 99, south of Collier Road and north of Winton Parkway, said CHP spokesperson Officer Moises Onsurez.

Costa was driving the Toyota in the middle lane of the highway at an estimated speed of 65 mph, when he noticed the Freightliner coming up behind him at a “high rate of speed,” Onsurez said.

Costa tried to take evasive measures to avoid being hit by the freightliner, but was unsuccessful and was hit from behind. The impact sent his vehicle onto the right shoulder, where it came to a stop.

The impact caused the Freightliner to overturn, dumping the two trailers onto the highway and spilling about 25 tons of carrots, according to the CHP.

Garcia sustained cuts to his face and hands and complained of pain in his back. He was taken by ambulance to Doctors Medical Center in Modesto.

The mess of carrots from the collision and the clean-up caused a closure of the highway, prompting a traffic jam that extended as far back as Keyes. The southbound lanes reopened after 3 p.m. Tuesday.

The investigation into the collision remains open, though at this time, the CHP does not believe drugs or alcohol played a factor in the crash.