Multiple Close Calls With Cattle in the Redcrest Area Prior to Fatal Accident; CHP Trying to Determine Responsibility

chpstarOn August 5, a woman died after the vehicle she was a passenger in struck a dead bull in the road north of Redcrest. The driver of the vehicle reportedly fled the fatal accident. (See earlier story here.) We’ve since learned that following an accident with a truck and trailer four days earlier on August 2 where cattle escaped, there were several dangerous incidents on Hwy 101 involving the livestock. The CHP is currently trying to “determine fault and responsibility” for the fatal accident, according to Officer Jeremy Lozensky of the California Highway Patrol.

At approximately 9:12 a.m. on Tuesday, August 2, a truck hauling cattle struck an embankment near the Redcrest offramp. Three animals escaped. One was recovered immediately but the other two disappeared into the wooded and brushy landscape. The Lost Coast Outpost on the day of the accident reported that “Rusty” told them that there were cattle on the road and “[t]raffic backed up in both directions.” Eventually, the incident cleared and the truck and trailer left the area.

Later that same evening, at least two motorists spied a brown cow about 7:15 p.m. north of the Redcrest exit and called in reporting the problem. An officer was dispatched to the scene but nothing further is noted in the log at that time.

No cattle were reported to the California Highway Patrol on August 3rd but, on the 4th there were two sightings. A “black cow” was reported at 6:40 p.m. on the roadside north of the Redcrest exit. Then a black cow was reported to be in the number two lane about 11:45 p.m.

At some point, one of the cows was recovered alive, according to Officer Lozensky. The date of the recovery is unclear.

Finally, on the 5th there was a sighting of a live “cow” at 9:07 p.m. Then another at 10:03 p.m. also north of Redcrest. It is unclear whether that animal was alive or dead. Then, finally, at 10:21 p.m. there was a report of a traffic accident. The vehicle, a Honda Civic, overturned and one person was trapped. Medical personnel pronounced one of the passengers, the only woman, deceased at the scene.

We know from the CHP press release that the bull was already dead before it was struck in the final fatal accident. “Someone reported hitting it but after [the fatal accident], Officer Lozensky stated. He said that the CHP was investigating whether the bull that the vehicle struck was one of the cattle that was lost during the initial accident. We can say that we looked back to July 22 and there were no cattle sightings reported in that area prior to the accident on August 2 even though there were multiple sightings afterwards.

Lozensky said his office is continuing to investigate the accident including who was driving at the time the Honda struck the deceased bull.

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22 comments

  • The CHP will follow up like they did marci kitchen.

    • Is Marci related to someone in one of this county’s law enforcement bureaus/units/departments? It’s coming close to a month since her car with a human or humans in it killed two children and left them. why is this okay? If its not okay–(of course it is not) why has nothing happened? Its feeling like someone out of county needs to examine this.

  • So no one knows who actually ran into and killed the bull that caused the accident from what I gathered. Strange.

  • shawnee craddock

    FBI needs to investigate Marcy Kitchen obviously our CHP is busy with cow accident one month is 30 days too long!!!

    • FORTUNA resident

      FYI, this is not simply a “cow accident”… A single mother is dead and three children have been left behind. I knew her personally. She was my friend and her daughter was in my 9 year old sons class the last 3 years. Her kids deserve justice as well as those precious little girls who were killed in the hit and run. She was an amazing and VERY involved mother and there are many people grieving, so please don’t dismiss what happened to her as a “cow accident”. All life is precious and matters.

  • “On roadways within an open range area, in a cow-car collision on a roadway, the rancher was at one time not generally liable,[10] but recent law changes beginning in the 1980s gradually increased rancher liability, first requiring cattle be kept off federal highways, then other developed roads, and in some cases, limited open range grazing only to certain times of the year. In some states, such as Montana, case law on the open range has, for all practical purposes, eliminated it altogether, though statutes may remain on the books. Today, a vehicle has a much higher chance of hitting a wild animal than livestock.[10]”

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_range

    Is it open range?

    • Humboldt county is not open range.

      • The bull was was from the accident 4 days early it has nothing to do with whether or not Humboldt county is open range or not..and it is not

    • Honeydew Bridge Chump

      Trinity, Shasta, Lassen, and Modoc are open graze.
      I don’t think Humboldt is, it’s too developed for any livestock production on a large scale to happen and there aren’t many people with ranching values.

  • Umm..okay…so lost cattle were roaming onto and off the highway where people drive 70 mph for a few days and eventually somebody got killed. Well, just what the hell do we have CHP for anyways?!! They sure seem to have lots of extra time to follow me and harass me for seat belt, cell phone and maybe you are drinking but oh I guess you are not, never mind sir-type stops but they can’t get somebody to round up a couple huge cows alongside the highway?!! I hope they get their asses sued on this one. Somebody died over this poor handling of an obviously dangerous situation!….yeah and Marcy Kitchen too!

  • Please be aware that the daughter of the mother that was tragically killed in this horrific accident can read all of your comments. She’s only 15 people. Words hurt. Speculation is worse. Stick to the facts and not the what ifs. Please stop being Marcy Kitchen into this as well. Completely different case.

  • I agree with family friend of the dead woman. Humboldt is open range in some places. However 101 is not one of them. My prayers go out to the family, and I find it odd that the driver in this accident disappeared. I have my suppressions I a not post then however, out of respect for the living

  • Your right it’s not a Marci Kitchen case obviously. But its all tied into the fact that the CHP could of possibly done their job and had a cruiser over in that area lpoking for the cow(s). Why not?? They always park in random spots over there ALL the time. This tragic death could of possibly been avoided. And it’s an issue of the CHP NOT doing their job in BOTH tragic situations!!!!

  • a beauriful woman has passed. She left behind 3 amazing children and a world full of family and friends. If you can not say anything nice say nothing at all. Say a prayer, send a good vibe, be supportive of these children. This is no ones article but the beautiful women who lost her life in an abundance of weird circumstances. Please show support and love! And please remember her for her love of life, children, friends, beautiful smile and all around being gorgeous!!!! You are forever missed my sweet bestie!!! Forever loved xoxoox

    • I met this beautiful lady just a time or two. Reading the comment from I love you that’s beautiful and it brings a tear to my eyes!

  • I lost a very dear friend in this incident!!!
    I don’t want to point blame I just want people to be far more aware when they’re driving.. Please these children can’t keep losing their parents like this..

  • The ball was clearly dropped here by both the responsible party for the missing cattle AND the CHP(no surprise there). Very very sad!
    I hope the proper parties are eventually held responsible and sued for wrongful death. This was NOT a deer or and elk or a bear…..this was someone’s private property, being reported by NUMEROUS TIMES by bystanders to PREVENT something tragic like this.
    And the driver…….. Needs to face the music. How disgusting this all is.
    I would never recommend anyone moving to Humboldt or Mendocino counties, anything goes!

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