A three-vehicle accident just north of Riverbank, across the Stanislaus River Bridge into San Joaquin County, claimed the life of a Modesto teenager on Aug. 14.
Escalon Fire Department was among the responding agencies, while the Escalon Police Department was also called in to service to divert traffic from leaving Escalon via Santa Fe Road.
According to the Stockton CHP, 19-year-old Robert Gonzales Burket of Modesto was the driver of a 1992 Toyota Camry that was westbound on a private road and exited onto Santa Fe – across from the entrance to Jacob Myers Park – without stopping, driving directly into the path of a northbound semi-truck. The passenger vehicle was struck on the driver’s side by the big rig in the accident, which occurred about 5:15 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 16. The big rig then swerved into the southbound lane of Santa Fe and struck a northbound pick-up truck. The driver of the Toyota was pronounced dead at the scene; a female passenger identified by authorities as Emma Kurtz, 17, was trapped in the vehicle and had to be extricated by responding emergency crews. She was taken by ambulance to Memorial Medical Center in Modesto with serious injuries.
Authorities said the big rig driver and the pick-up truck driver did not report any injuries. The CHP also indicated the passenger in the Toyota was wearing her seatbelt but the driver was not buckled up.