Investigators identify driver from Forest Ave collision, medical condition possible cause

UPDATE: Chico police released the name of the driver involved in a fatal collision in the area of Forest Avenue as 78-year-old Maureen Beck of Chico.

Posted: Feb 19, 2020 7:25 PM
Updated: Feb 27, 2020 10:55 AM

UPDATE: 10:48 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 27 - Chico police released the name of the driver involved in a fatal collision in the area of Forest Avenue as 78-year-old Maureen Beck of Chico.

The head-on collision killed one motorcyclist and sent Beck to the hospital on Wednesday, Feb. 19. Officers said the driver was in the bike lane and hit a motorcycle head-on before swiping a white sedan with the rear-end of the car, causing damage to the front-end of the white sedan.

The wrong-way driver, Maureen Beck, potentially had a medical condition while operating her car, causing the collision to occur, according to police.

The driver and all parties involved are continuing to cooperate with the investigation, according to police.

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UPDATE: 11:20 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 20 – Investigators said they have identified the motorcyclist who died in a crash on Wednesday, as 66-year-old Timothy Sonnenburg, of Chico.

Chico Police said they first began receiving calls concerning a major collision in the area of Forest Avenue near Amada Way around 4:11 p.m. on Wednesday.

Reports say a vehicle was traveling on the wrong side of Forest Avenue just before the collision.

Police said three vehicles and a motorcyclist were involved in the collision.

The motorcyclist later died at the hospital due to major injuries form the crash. The wrong-way driver was an elderly woman who police said potentially had a medical condition while operating her car, causing the collision to occur.

Authorities said the at-fault driver is fully cooperating with Chico Police Traffic Investigators.

Police said alcohol or drugs do not appear to be a factor in the collision.

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CHICO, Calif. - Chico Police say they are investigating a head-on crash that killed one motorcyclist and sent an elderly woman to the hospital.

It happened just after 4 p.m. when officials say a gold Nissan, driven by the elderly woman, was driving the wrong way on southbound Forest Avenue at Springfield Drive and Amanda Way.

Officials say the driver was in the bike lane and hit a motorcycle head-on before swiping a white sedan with the rear-end of the car, causing damage to the front-end of the white sedan.

RELATED: Northern California Traffic Alerts

The driver then went on to hit a white SUV head-on before finally coming to a stop.

While injuries, if any, remained minor for the drivers of the cars, the motorcyclist was taken to the hospital in critical condition and pronounced dead later on Wednesday night. 

The road was closed southbound at Humboldt Avenue on Forest Avenue until about 10 p.m. Wednesday while crews investigated.

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