Five Dead in Fort Bragg Area Auto Accident

Five Dead in Fort Bragg Area Auto Accident

Five Dead in Fort Bragg Area Auto Accident

I’m Ed Smith, a Fort Bragg car accident lawyer. At least five individuals, including one child, lost their lives following a car accident that occurred in rural Mendocino County on Monday, March 26, 2018.

I would like to express my deep sympathy for the friends and family grieving the loss of their loved ones during this time.

Collision Information

According to public incident reports from the California Highway Patrol (CHP), the accident took place just outside of Fort Bragg on a remote section of Highway 1 along a cliff on the coast. Reports indicated that the car accident was initially spotted by a passing motorist at approximately 3:40 pm. The informant told CHP that they had seen a wrecked vehicle on the shore at the bottom of the cliff, more than 100 feet below the roadway.


CHP official Brian Henderson, who was part of a two-man helicopter response crew from CHP’s Northern Division Air Operations base located in Redding, participated in the recovery and spoke to reporters about the collision. Henderson indicated that emergency response efforts included multiple agencies and took hours, adding that firefighters had to rappel down the cliff side in order to reach the vehicle, which had been partially submerged in the ocean.

Upon reaching the wreck, responders identified the vehicle as a Ford Explorer and discovered that five individuals had been fatally injured in the crash. Hours after responders arrived, at approximately 7:00 p.m., three vehicle occupants had finally been extricated. Two other individuals remained in the vehicle as a tow truck prepared to lift the wrecked vehicle back up to the highway using a winch.

Identity of Victims

The identities of the deceased parties have not yet been reported to the public due to pending family notification.


CHP is currently conducting a full accident investigation report in order to determine what factors contributed to the collision. Officials indicated that the vehicle may have been on the shore for a long period of time before it was noticed and reported. Factors that may have contributed to this crash and remain under investigation include common accident causes such as vehicle malfunctions, roadway defects such as insufficient signage or defective guardrails, speeding, and more.

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Fort Bragg Car Accident Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Fort Bragg car accident lawyer. In many accidents involving wrongful death, at-fault parties can be held liable for resulting damages. If a car accident has caused you or somebody you love to suffer serious harm, please contact me at (707) 564-1900 or toll-free at (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly advice.

Since 1982, I have helped families from Fort Bragg and across Mendocino County recover compensation for their personal injury and wrongful death cases.

Please feel free to browse my client feedback at:

I am listed as a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, a nationwide organization of trial lawyers who have achieved case settlements and verdicts resulting in million dollar awards for clients.

To see how I resolved cases in the past, please visit my Previous Verdicts and Settlements page.

Photograph Credit: By “StockSnap” via Pixabay

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