A Delhi teenager suffered extensive burns and injuries in a solo vehicle crash on Highway 99 Sunday night in Turlock.
The teenager was identified as Ramon Gonzalez, 19. He sustained major injuries in the crash and burns to his head, hands, and feet from the resulting fire, according to the California Highway Patrol.
Gonzalez was driving a 1998 Lincoln Navigator northbound on Highway 99 around 11:40 p.m. Sunday at an undetermined speed. For an unknown reason, Gonzalez made a sudden turning maneuver on the freeway, causing the Lincoln to veer across the lanes and the Lander Avenue on-ramp. The vehicle continued down an embankment and through a chain-link fence, overturning in the process, according to the CHP.
The Navigator came to a stop in a grassy field near the highway and quickly went from smoking to flames, which ignited the dry grass around the vehicle.
The Turlock Fire and Police departments both responded to the scene. Turlock Police officers, with the assistance of two bystanders, helped Gonzalez out of the vehicle and away from the fire. Gonzalez was taken by air ambulance to Doctors Medical Center and later transferred to UC Davis Medical Center.
The grass fire burned an estimated one-fourth of an acre before being brought under control and extinguished. A total of four engines and one battalion chief responded to the incident for a total of 13 Turlock Fire personnel. Two AMR ground ambulances and a Cal Star air ambulance also responded.
Gonzalez was wearing a seat belt, according to the CHP.
The collision remains under investigation.