This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.
This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.
4 Children And 2 Moms Die As Dads Try To Rescue Them From Fiery Wreck
A vacation for two Bay Area families turned into tragedy when their van was rear ended and suddenly burst into flames. Four children and their two mothers died as their fathers tried to save them from the wreck.
California Highway Patrol Officer Monica Posada told the L.A. Times that the van was in the shoulder, but partially blocking the No. 4 lane when a big rig rear-ended it around 3:30 a.m. The van rolled down an embankment and burst into flames.
The two men were able to get out of the van but the women and children were trapped. "We got out to try to assist the two males trying to get their families out of the van," CHP Officer Dan Williams, who was one of the first to respond to the scene, NBC 4. "Unfortunately, we weren’t able to do so due to the van catching fire quickly."
"I grabbed the fire extinguisher, and I tried to extinguish the flames. But like we said, the van burst into flames very, very quickly and we were unable to assist in getting anyone out of the van," Williams told ABC 7.
Both men suffered burns and were airlifted to a nearby hospital for treatment. They have been identified as 34-year-old Aaron Hon Wing Ng of San Francisco and 45-year-old Wei Xiong Li of Daly City. The identities of the women and children were not released, though CHP said the children were 2, 3, 4 and 5 years old.