A fatal accident on a freeway Aug. 26 took the life of a 2-year-old girl. The multi-vehicle crash caused one of the cars to burst into flames. The baby's mother and others present at the scene were unable to extract the child in time from the burning car.
The accident occurred at approximately 5:30 p.m., when a GMC Yukon SUV and a Nissan Altima smashed into each other in the freeway's southbound lanes. The site of the crash has reportedly frequently been the location of other accidents.
The 2-year-old was a passenger in the Altima. The ensuing fire swiftly engulfed the entire vehicle, making it difficult for the mother and others present to try to put the fire out. A resident from a nearby home stated that he heard the child screaming, and then fall silent. A college student who lives adjacent to the freeway, said that he and three other men used a fire extinguisher, buckets, and a garden hose to try to put out the blaze.
The men smashed the car's back window with a bat, but were unable to reach the girl because of the intensity of the fire. One of the men was an off-duty police officer.
Some motorists reportedly stopped their cars, but made no effort to exit their vehicles to provide assistance.
Four other people were taken to the hospital after the accident, including the driver of the Yukon, the girl's mother, and two rescuers who suffered burns while trying to save the girl.
Source: Los Angeles Times, "Girl, 2, dies in fiery accident on the 110 Freeway in Highland Park," Sam Quinones and Dan Weikel, Aug. 27, 2011