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Santa Cruz Man Killed in Tragic Multi-Vehicle Crash on Hwy 17 Identified

The Santa Cruz man killed in an 11-vehicle accident involving a big-rig that injured seven people Thursday on state Highway 17 south of Los Gatos was 25-year-old Daniel McGuire, the Santa Clara County medical examiner's office reported today.

McGuire had been partially ejected after his car crashed in the northbound lane near Bear Creek Road where a big-rig jackknifed at around 7:50 a.m. Thursday, California Highway Patrol Officer Ross Lee said.

Seven people were transported to a hospital for treatment, six with minor injuries and one reported in critical condition with a lacerated liver, but that victim will likely be released today, Lee said.

[Previous: UPDATE on Hwy 17 Crash: 1 Dead After Truck Jackknifes; NB Lanes Closed.]

The CHP closed down the northbound lanes and one southbound lane of the highway until around 5:20 p.m., CHP officials said.

The big-rig was likely hauling gravel in its container at the time of the multi-vehicle pile-up, Lee said.

The owner of the truck arrived at the scene of the accident, but the CHP cannot publicly reveal his name or the name of his business, Lee said.

The CHP's Multi Disciplinary Accident Investigation Team is conducting the investigation into the crash and officers cannot say definitively yet whether the accident was the result of a brake failure in the big-rig, Lee said.

Witnesses told officers that they saw smoke coming from the truck's brakes, but the CHP's team still needs to do more legwork, such interviewing the big-rig's owner and examining the truck's maintenance records, Lee said.

Investigators will also try to determine if the big-rig's driver, who was not injured in the crash, was trying to slow down after seeing traffic in front on the highway and had hit the brakes as the truck was headed downhill, according to Lee.

--Bay City News

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