Driver killed in violent Rancho Bernardo crash - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Driver killed in violent Rancho Bernardo crash

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Some Rancho Bernardo residents are raising concerns over what they say is a dangerous stretch of road, after a driver died in a violent crash in the area Monday afternoon.

"Cars do 65 mph up the hill," said Dan Touchstone.

Police say just before 3:00 p.m. Monday, the driver was headed west on Bernardo Heights Parkway, near Avenida Venusto when he lost control of his 2006 Toyota Scion, veered off the street and slammed into a tree.

"This is a pretty violent accident as you can see," said Lt. Christian Sharp, San Diego Police Department. "We are going to have to process the car, it's pretty horrific."

Police say the impact was so severe they were not able to identify the driver on the scene.

Investigators closed down Bernardo Heights Parkway between Avenido Venusto and Calle Nobleza for four hours, as officers rummaged through clothes and bags thrown from the car and marked evidence. They found a child's seat but only the driver was in the car.

"We are getting an indication according to witnesses that the car may have been going a high rate of speed," said Sharp.

Neighbors say they often hear and see crashes along Bernardo Heights Parkway and feel like it's unsafe.

"I have been in situations where I thought I was losing control," said resident Raj Kodura.

The posted speed limit is 45 mph along Bernardo Heights Parkway and Avenido Venusto.

"People go by there 20 mph or faster, it's common," said Touchstone.

Families taking their nightly walk are scared, "walking is kind of dangerous, you don't want to walk in the street because you never know," said Patricia Spadarro.

A few years ago the city repaved Bernardo Heights Parkway but families say the drainage dips shifted into the driving lanes the lanes making it more dangerous for drivers.

"If you have any speed at all it can throw your direction off," said Touchstone.

Drivers say the city put in traffic calming devices including a speed limit feedback signal west of Avenido Venusto but many still feel like the road is dangerous.

"There are several locations where I had to slam the breaks because I thought I was losing control," said Kodura. "It's the dip and the curve that's where you lose control."

A CBS News 8 crew drove the stretch of road where the crash happened and could feel the dips.

The crash remains under investigation. The medical examiner will not release the driver's identity until next of kin has been notified.

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