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Arroyo Grande High School student seriously injured in crash off Highway 101

Five Cities Fire Authority officials respond to a collision involving a vehicle and a tree on southbound Highway 101 at the Grand Avenue on-ramp in Arroyo Grande.
Five Cities Fire Authority officials respond to a collision involving a vehicle and a tree on southbound Highway 101 at the Grand Avenue on-ramp in Arroyo Grande.

Update, 5 p.m.:

Officials say the driver and the passenger in the truck were two Arroyo Grande High School students.

CHP Officer Mike Poelking said the two 17-year-old students were heading eastbound on Grand Avenue when they turned onto the highway. During their acceleration, the car spun out of control and drove over the edge of the road into a culvert, where it hit a large tree branch, he said.

“To me it looks like a combination of speed and wet roadway,” Poelking said, noting that cars often lose control on the ramps in the area due to high speeds.

Five Cities Fire Chief Steve Lieberman told The Tribune the pair appeared to be on their way back to school from lunch when the crash occurred.

Arroyo Grande High School principal Dan Neff said the high school has an open campus policy for upper classmen, allowing them to leave the school grounds during lunchtime.

“Our thoughts are with the students involved in the accident and their families,” Neff said in an email statement to The Tribune on Thursday afternoon. “We are here to support all of our students and there is counseling available for any student that may need it.”

Original story:

One person was seriously injured Thursday afternoon when the truck he was riding in hit a tree at the Grand Avenue on-ramp onto southbound Highway 101, according to the CHP and Five Cities Fire Authority.

The crash happened at about 12:30 p.m. Thursday, according to the CHP’s incident information log.

There were two male occupants in the truck, Five Cities Fire Authority Chief Steve Lieberman told The Tribune. The driver was able to make it out of the car, but the passenger had to be extricated by firefighters.

The passenger was taken to Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center in San Luis Obispo, Lieberman said.

Information was not immediately available regarding whether or not the crash was weather-related.

Additional information was not immediately available.

This story will be updated.

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Gabby Ferreira is a breaking news and general assignment reporter at The Tribune in San Luis Obispo. A native of Houston, Texas, she was a reporter in Tucson, Arizona; Indianapolis, Indiana; and Palm Springs, California, before moving to San Luis Obispo County in 2016.
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