A 6-year-old girl was killed and her toddler sister was badly injured after their mother lost control of the car they were in and crashed into a light post in the Stevenson Ranch area Monday morning, California Highway Patrol said.
Witnesses saw a woman driving a 2019 Subaru recklessly on The Old Road with her children in the car when she ran a red light, veered into oncoming traffic and struck a power pole near Pico Canyon Road at about 9:45 a.m., according to CHP Sgt. Zachary Emmons and a news release from the agency.
The release says the vehicle also smashed into a tree before coming to rest.
The car then burst into flames, and the woman and children got out with the help of good Samaritans, CHP said.
Bryan Timmerman told KTLA he witnessed the crash and pulled the mother from the wreckage first.
“She was completely naked,” Timmerman said. “And there were no clothes anywhere.”
CHP identifies the woman as a 31-year-old from Bakersfield. Officers earlier said initial investigation indicated the woman may have been naked when she got out of the car, and other witnesses told KTLA her clothing may have been ripped or damaged.
Another good Samaritan who helped rescued the children said “they were in really bad condition.”
Both were taken to a hospital in critical condition before the older girl was pronounced dead. After earlier describing the deceased child as a boy, CHP said both children were girls.
The mother and 2-year-old remained hospitalized with major injuries Monday evening, according to CHP.
Timmerman said the vehicle looked to be going about 60-70 mph before it crashed. After, video from the scene showed it fully engulfed in flames.
CHP Capt. Ed Krusey said the fire consumed most of the interior of the vehicle, making it harder to determine if the 6- and 2-year-old children were properly restrained in their seats.
However, Timmerman says he doesn’t think the children were properly restrained and described having to cut them out of oddly fastened seats. He also said it looked like the mother had “just piled a bunch of stuff in the back, because it had all fallen over onto the kids.”
CHP said The cause of the crash remains under investigation, and no further details were available.
KTLA’s Nidia Becerra and Erika Martin contributed to this report.