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Lassen man dies in Highway 36 crash

Dan McDonald
Staff Writer
9/28/2011

A 22-year-old Milford man was found dead Tuesday morning, Sept. 27, after a single-vehicle accident on Highway 36 near Chester.

Jeffrey D. Washabaugh died from blunt-force injuries after his 2006 Toyota Tacoma apparently veered off the road and crashed into a pine tree near the bottom of the Johnson Grade.

According to the California Highway Patrol, Washabaugh was not wearing a seat belt.

The time and cause of the accident are still under investigation.

According to reports from the CHP and sheriff’s office, Washabaugh was reported overdue at 11:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 26, when he didn’t arrive at his destination in Sutter.

Washabaugh reportedly left Milford about 6 p.m. Sunday.

Sheriff’s deputies searched the road near Johnson’s Grade and discovered Washabaugh’s truck about 9 a.m. Tuesday.

According to the CHP’s accident report, Washabaugh was traveling westbound on Highway 36 at an unknown speed when the accident happened.

For reasons that remain unknown, Washabaugh allowed the truck to continue on a straight path as the road curved left.

The highway in that area is above the forest floor. The truck became airborne when it left the road and hit a tree.

The collision caused the truck’s airbag to deploy.



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