Wreck

The remains of a Ford F-250 after striking a tree at a high rate of speed. The driver died of injuries at the scene, four others were hospitalized.

A horrific wreck in Covington Mill last Friday night, Sept. 6, has left one person dead and injured four.

A Ford F-250 was going at high speed when it went off Highway 3 south of Guy Covington Drive and struck a tree on the shoulder, the California Highway Patrol said.

The wreck was reported at 8 p.m. It was determined that the driver, Justin Seaman, 20, of Eagle Point, Ore., was unable to negotiate a curve due to the truck’s speed, the CHP said.

The CHP said alcohol appears to have been a factor in this crash. Any witnesses are asked to call the Trinity River Area CHP office at 623-3832.

First responders found the vehicle in three parts, Trinity Center Fire Chief Bob Bryant said.

Two people had been able to get out of the vehicle but “the other three required extensive extrication,” Bryant said. “The problem is because of the position of the three in the truck the extrication had to be done slowly and properly to keep from causing more injury to the occupants.”

Equipment ranging from the Jaws of Life to socket wrenches was used with assistance from several fire departments. It took several hours, Bryant said. “During the extrication, one passed away.”

The driver, Seaman, succumbed to his injuries at the scene. Four passengers were airlifted to the hospital with moderate to major injuries. The highway was closed for the duration of the extrication and was reopened at approximately 2:05 a.m.

Passengers taken to Mercy Medical Center with major injuries were William Hancock, 19, of Eureka, and Otoniel Moreno, 19, of Arcata.

Treyvn Mullins, 20, of Eureka, and Owen Fite, 18, of Eureka, were reported to have moderate injuries.

As of Tuesday, Hancock was still at Mercy Medical Center listed in critical condition. The other three were not on the hospital roster, a hospital spokesperson said.

Personnel from multiple agencies responded to this crash. Chief Bryant said Monday he was in the process of arranging a critical incident stress debriefing for the responders at the scene.

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