UPDATE: The driver who was killed when his pickup plunged off a Shell Beach cliff Tuesday has been identified as 33-year-old Sean Ramirez of Los Osos.
Pismo Beach police said that shortly before the incident, several citizens had called to report that the driver of a white truck had veered off the roadway several times while traveling south on Highway 101. The driver then exited the freeway at Price Street and drove north before driving off the cliff.
Patrol units were on their way to the area when a caller reported to dispatchers at 5:58 p.m. that the truck had gone over the cliff south of the Best Western Shelter Cove Lodge, according to police.
Responders found the white Ford Ranger about 200 feet below on a small beach. Cal Fire crews reached Ramirez by watercraft and by rappelling down the cliff.
Ramirez was pulled from the wreckage but died at the scene, police said.
The Pismo Beach Police Department is investigating the crash. An autopsy is planned for today, and toxicology reports are pending.
Original story: A man in his early 30s is dead after his pickup plummeted off a Shell Beach cliff and landed more than 150 feet below on a small sandy cove.
At 5:58 p.m., Pismo Beach police received a report of a vehicle over a cliff at Price Street just south of Best Western Shelter Cove and north of the tennis courts. The driver, who was not identified pending notification of next of kin, was the only person in the truck.
The white Ford Ranger landed on its driver's side in the sand at the base of the cliff. Books, a backpack, a football and other personal items lay scattered on the sand next to the truck. Cal Fire crews reached the victim, who likely died on impact, by watercraft and by rappelling down the cliff.
Cal Fire firefighters hoisted the man's body up the cliff using ropes and a Stokes basket. Pismo Beach police Cmdr. Jake Miller said the man was traveling north on Price Street when he crossed over the southbound lane and went over the cliff.
Anthony Robles and his father, Tony Robles, were in a nearby parking lot by the Best Western Shelter Cove when the accident occurred.
Anthony heard someone yelling to call 911. As he dialed, Tony leaned over the cliff's edge and yelled to see whether the driver could respond. No one did.
Crews worked into the night to tow the truck up from the beach.
Police were investigating what caused the accident.