Appeal-Democrat Archive Writing

Speed blamed in fatal wreck

November 3, 2008

Excessive speed and slick road conditions proved a fatal combination for a 27-year-old Olivehurst man who violently flipped and rolled his truck near his home late Saturday night.

Terry Sutton was traveling at a high rate of speed north on Rancho Road just off of McGowan Parkway at about 11:30 p.m., CHP Sgt. Dave Eisenbarth.

Witnesses said Sutton pulled a U-turn at the end of the road and proceeded south on Rancho Road when the Ford truck began fishtailing after crossing McGowan Parkway, Eisenbarth said.

Sutton’s truck rolled and flipped violently until it came to rest in a ditch a few yards from the railroad tracks with the front end facing north, Eisenbarth said. Sutton was pronounced dead at 11:58 p.m.

Although a storm left the roads slick, it was not raining at the time of the accident.

Relatives said Sutton had left his house to visit friends nearby shortly before the accident. Eisenbarth said Sutton was seen accelerating, spinning his tires and “screwing around.”

Speed and the slippery, uneven road likely played a large role in the accident, Eisenbarth said. He ruled out alcohol being involved.

Word of the accident spread quickly through Sutton’s friends and family. Dozens came to the scene of the accident. Some dropped to their knees upon seeing Sutton’s truck overturned, others offered a shoulder for weeping.

Lydia Sutton, Terry’s aunt, said he lived only a few blocks away from the accident with his wife Shawna and a 3-year-old son, Austin.

At least 20 other people have died in vehicle-related crashes in the Mid-Valley since the beginning of the year, including eight people aboard a chartered bus that rolled over in rural Colusa County last month.

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