CHP Releases More Information on Fatal Crash that Closed 101 North of Willits

[Photo by Chris Brannan]

This is a press release from the California Highway Patrol:

On September 29, 2018, at approximately 1338 hours, a 2008 Dodge Ram 1500 pick-up, with two female occupants, was being driven northbound on US-101, near Reynolds Highway, north of Willits, CA. at an unknown rate of speed.Robert Maffia, of Ukiah, CA., was driving his 1997 Peterbilt tractor/trailer combination, southbound on US-101, near Reynolds Highway, at approximately 55 MPH.For reasons still under investigation, the driver of the Dodge lost control of her vehicle and it crossed into the southbound lanes, directly into the path of the Peterbilt.Mr. Maffia took evasive actions; however, despite his efforts, the Peterbilt collided with the driver’s side of the Dodge.The Dodge spun out of the roadway and came to rest on the west shoulder of US-101.The Peterbilt came to rest in the northbound lanes of US-101.The load of lumber being hauled by the Peterbilt, spilled off the trailer and into the roadway, blocking both directions of traffic on US-101.

The driver and passenger of the Dodge were pronounced deceased at the scene.Their names are currently being withheld pending notification of the next of kin. It is unknown at this time of drugs or alcohol were a factor in this collision.

Mr. Maffia was treated at the scene for minor injuries.He was determined not to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Due to the recovery of the vehicles, scene clean up, and the collision investigation, the northbound and southbound lanes of US-101 were closed for approximately two-hours.One-way traffic control was then established for continued collision scene investigation and clean up efforts.The California Highway Patrol Garberville Area is investigating this collision.

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40 comments

  • Distracted, drugged, drunk or drinking, eating, playing, texting, talking – obviously not DRIVING.

    • Angielee stanaberry

      [edit]..u don’t know her…she had her niece I’m the car…she wouldn’t have don’t ANYTHIMG to put that girl in danger Intentionally…why run your mouth when u have no idea what happened?

    • You really need to stop with your negative comments. These 2 ladies were my family and my family is hurting very badly. I can guarantee drugs and drinking were not a factor. One of the ladies was maybe 12 years old. If all you have is negativity to share then get the hell out of here with that BS. I pray you and your family never ever have to endure this kind of pain. My family doesnt need your bs

    • They call it oil well Hill for a reason. It is always super slick through there. Condolences to the family and to the commenters just be nice someday it could be someone you love.

      • It is called oil well hill because believe it or not there was once a man who set up a oil rig at the bittom of the hill to extract a low grade kerosine type oil that could ve burned. A little bit of Mendo History

    • These kind of commenters universally attract some horrible stuff into their lives so don’t waist any energy on them, they are taken care of. Considering only an unhappy person would ever speculate on a strangers death in such an awful manner, you already know this is just a horrid human with nothing good in their life who contributes nothing to the planet and never fear, this person is only attracting more things to be miserable about. Sorry to the family, please never ever ever read the comments on this site if the article is about you or someone you care about. You don’t need to see what some worthless, human garbage made up.

      • Not just this site. Still, tragedy brings out the demented. RIP to the victims.

        • Thank you, I meant to say that, yes, almost any site really. I wish we lived an world where you could receive comforting words after a love one died from reading the comments but sadly not everyone has respect or kindness.

    • Excuse me but speculation is rude and uncalled for…bit was the first rain of the season and the roads were slick so anything could have happened… So maybe keep your negative comments to yourself…. Families of the laides that died do not need to see this kind of crap…. Grow up

    • Mr Right, I’m not sure why you are so motivated to make comments that are always, negative, mean, incentive, arrogant, antagonistic…etc. I feel very sorry for you. You seem to be completely void of love, compassion, sensitivity to others, and many more of the positive characters that allow most people to live full happy lives. It is so sad that you chose to miss out on such priceless fruits.

    • Why are people so quick to start throwing accusations around when they don’t know anything about the people who were involved in the accident can’t people like u keep your mouths shut and let the family mourn in peace instead of having to hear this type of bullshit. [edit] it was the first rain of the year and the road was slippery there was 4 other accidents within an hour of this one are u going to say that none of these people were paying attention that they were all doing something that they shouldn’t have been doing not unless your to stupid [edit] and think that accidents do happen even when your doing everything that your suppose to be doing

    • Armchair crime scene investigator wannabe. Just zip it Mr. Far from right.

    • Ms. Have some compassion

      Two people just lost their lives; their friends and family lost people they loved. Could you possibly have the least bit of compassion? The roads were slick that day; your assumption that texting or drugs/alcohol were a factor are unfounded and more than likely inaccurate. Shame on you!

  • Newly wet road… lots’a oil and other debris on it. Very slick.
    Be careful out there.

  • Gee, Mr. Right, thanks for doing the CHP’s investigation for them. They obviously lack your brilliant insight, and depend on mere plebian fact gathering.

  • Why is it called “Oil Well Hill”? I`ve heard an exploratory well was drilled there. Does anyone know anything about this? Isolated gas is occasionally found in infilled valleys such as Little Lake Valley.

    • Yes there was exploratory drilling.They never found enough oil to bother. First rain of the year brings a different oil onto the road surface.Along with everything that’s been spilled there since last good rain. It’s very slick in spots and this could have been any of us in this terrible accident. My prayers are with the family.

  • I’m so sorry for your loss. RIP sweet girls 💕

  • It’s not demented commentary. Drive on the road 90% are on the phone or texting. So many others smoking weed! No Regard for their own safety or others. Payed with their life. Better theirs than mine or my family. Harsh but wont stop the millions that will do the same tomorrow.

  • Super sad! This part of the road is notoriously slippery in any kind of rain or fog and can be tricky even in the middle of summer depending on traffic and conditions. The corner banks strangely and almost wants to pitch you into the southbound lane if you aren’t extra careful. Add the already weird road conditions to the first rain of the season and it’s just an awful, horrible, tragic accident. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family and everyone that is hurting right now. Rest In Peace girls.

  • This is just heart breaking my heart goes out to the familys i know the mother and the aunt of the 12 year old girl and my heart goes out to the mother expecally this makes her 2nd child that she has lost now 💔

  • I’m so sorry for the lives lost. And for the gentleman who got hit. It can’t be easy for him either. He was a victim as well.

    • As are people who helped. That can be very traumatic even once. I don’t know how people like firefighters, police and parametics do it repeatedly.

      • You are so right. So many innocent lives being affected by this. It’s so scary to see how fragile and precious life really is.

  • I am so sorry for the people who lost their lives. Sending prayers and positive thoughts and love to friends and family.

  • Im still currently struggling with how to help the depression my child has fallen into.
    This was a huge blow to this community and to many of the youth especially

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