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Thread: California Firefighter Struck, Killed by Hit and Run Driver at Car Fire Scene

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    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    California Firefighter Struck, Killed by Hit and Run Driver at Car Fire Scene

    Soledad, California Firefighter Struck, Killed by Hit and Run Driver at Car Fire Scene


    CALIFORNIA HIGHWAY PATROL
    Official Press Release

    At approx. 1654 hrs. on Saturday, Soledad Fire Dept. was dispatched on a car fire on north bound US101 just north of Soledad.

    When they arrived, they found an abandoned van fully engulfed, parked on the right shoulder. Their fire engine was parked up-wind, in front of the vehicle. 32 yr. old Soledad Firefighter Mario F. Cunha was rolling out a fire hose to begin to extinguish the fire.

    A Chevy Corsica was approaching the scene, in the #2 lane, at an unknown rate of speed and struck the firefighter. The impact flung him on top of the fire engine and onto the ground. He was declared deceased at the scene. Firefighter Cunha had been with the Soledad Fire Department since April 2002 and lived in Soledad.

    The Chevy fled the scene and continued north.

    Approximately an hour later, the suspect and Chevy were located by Gonzales Police Department just outside the city of Gonzales. The California Highway Patrol arrested the unlicensed driver who was a 28 year old female from Salinas. The CHP booked the suspect into the Monterey County jail for vehicular manslaughter and felony hit-and-run.

    North-bound traffic on US101 was diverted for approximately 3 and a half hours. The California Highway Patrol

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    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    Firefighter killed in hit-and-run

    Herald staff report


    A volunteer firefighter was struck by a car and killed while on duty in Soledad on Saturday evening.

    The man, whose identity was withheld by authorities pending notification of next-of-kin, was hit by a car shortly before 5 p.m. as he fought a vehicle fire on Highway 101 near Camphora Gloria Road.

    The driver of the car, a woman whose identity has not been released, drove away from the scene but was stopped and detained by the California Highway Patrol.

    The CHP said her name was not released because she was technically being detained for questioning and had not been arrested Saturday night.

    The firefighter was killed instantly, according to Soledad City manager Noelia Chapa, who remained on duty at her office Saturday night.

    "It's a difficult situation," she said, adding that a grief counselor had been called in.

    The small city fire department has two paid staff on duty weekends and evenings, assisted by volunteers, Chapa said, adding that the victim was a volunteer.


    http://www.montereyherald.com/mld/mo...al/8185159.htm

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    Cunha, Mario F

    Age: 32
    Cause of Death: Struck By/Contact with Object
    Rank: Fire Engineer
    Nature of Death: Internal Trauma
    Status: Volunteer
    Emergency Duty: Yes

    Incident Date: 03/13/2004
    Duty Type: Fireground Operations
    Incident Time: 16:54
    Activity Type: Water Supply
    Death Date: 03/13/2004
    Fixed Prop. Use: Street/Road

    Fire Dept. Info:
    Soledad Fire Department
    PO Box 156
    525 Monterey St.
    Soledad , California 93960
    Chief: Jesse D. Casillas

    Initial Summary:
    Firefighter Cunha was struck and killed in the roadway by a passing vehicle at the scene of an automobile fire.

    Memorial Fund Info:
    Mario Cunha Memorial Fund, First National Bank, Acct: #47049226, 695 Front St., Soledad, CA 93960 Tele: (800) 495-7100


    http://www.usfa.fema.gov/application...eath_year=2004

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    Firefighters Gather To Honor Hit-And-Run Victim

    Story by theksbwchannel.com

    MONTEREY, Calif. -- Firefighters from all over California converged on Monterey Wednesday to say goodbye to fallen colleague Mario Cuna.

    Cuna was killed in a hit-and-run crash March 13 on Highway 101, near Soledad, while he was fighting a fire alongside the road.

    Investigators say Oreina Zarco, 28, who is an unlicensed driver, left the scene of the crash but was taken into custody a short time later by California Highway Patrol officers.

    The procession began in Soledad Wednesday morning. Cuna's coffin was draped in an American flag and carried to the service on a vintage fire truck.

    Authorities said Oreina Zarco, 28, faces charges of felony hit-and-run and vehicular manslaughter related to the crash.


    Copyright 2004 by TheKSBWChannel.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...8&sectionId=39

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