Crash kills Nevada City man |

Crash kills Nevada City man

A 23-year-old Nevada City man was killed Friday night after he lost control of his sport utility vehicle and crashed it into a guardrail on the Golden Center Freeway.

James Sindt was driving a 1993 GMC Sonoma pickup west on the highway at about 9:40 p.m. When he reached the Broad Street off-ramp, he was driving at speeds greater than 70 mph, according to the California Highway Patrol. The speed limit in that area is 50 mph.

Sindt lost control of his SUV for unknown reasons, highway patrol Sgt. Dee Lavrador said, and made a sudden right turning movement and collided with a metal guardrail.

There were no ice or wet spots on the road, Lavrador said.

“There was no other condition present that could have caused the accident,” she said.

Sindt was not wearing a seat belt, according to the highway patrol, and was partially thrown from the vehicle through the right front window. The SUV began spinning after hitting the guardrail, and Sindt, who was already partially out of the vehicle, collided with a wooden post.

The second collision, between Sindt and the wooden post, was most likely the cause of his death, Lavrador said. He was fully thrown from the vehicle and his body was found in the slow lane of the highway.

The pickup continued on and eventually hit a tree. The highway patrol closed off the slow lane of the freeway for two hours afterward.

Alcohol or drugs had not been ruled out Sunday as a contributing factor in the crash. Had the driver remembered one thing, a highway patrol news release said, he would probably have lived.

“If the driver would have been wearing a seat belt,” the news release said, “it is most likely he would have survived the collision.”

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