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CHP Officer In Critical Condition After Crash Injures 4

CHP Officer In Critical Condition After Crash Injures 4

405 Closed After Accident involving CHP Officer405 Closed After Accident involving CHP Officer [California Highway Patrol]

Associated Press

June 10, 2010

LOS ANGELES—A California Highway Patrol motorcycle officer and three others were taken to the hospital Wednesday after a three-vehicle crash shut down the northbound 405 Freeway for several hours, backing up traffic for miles.

Phillip Ortiz, a 27-year veteran based at the CHP’s West Los Angeles station, was making a traffic stop on the right shoulder of the highway near the Interstate 10 interchange about 8:35 a.m., said CHP Officer Miguel Luevano.

In a statement, Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center officials said Ortiz, 52, remains in critical condition. His family has requested their privacy.

Witnesses told investigators that a car traveling on the shoulder to try to pass slower traffic suddenly came upon the stopped motorcycle and SUV, Luevano said.

Trying to avoid the vehicles, the car crashed into the officer, shoving him and his motorcycle forward into the stopped SUV, Luevano said. The force of the impact caused the SUV to overturn, and the officer was pinned in the tangle of car wreckage until rescuers extricated him, Luevano said.

The SUV’s two occupants and the car’s driver were also transported to UCLA Medical Center.

The occupants of the SUV suffered minor injures, Luevano said. The condition of the other driver was unknown.

The northbound freeway was closed between Venice Boulevard and I-10 until the early afternoon.

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