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Car runs under 18-wheeler, kills Chico woman

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Messenger photo by Joe Duty

Messenger photo by Joe Duty

A Chico woman was killed Wednesday evening when her car ran underneath an 18-wheeler on Texas 101, just south of Chico.

Maria Ruiz-Quezada, 52, was northbound in a Toyota Corolla on 101 about 6 p.m. when a 3 J Trucking tractor-trailer pulled out in front of her as it left Blue Star Materials. The truck was driven by Johnny Hothouse, 49, of Chico.

Department of Public Safety Trooper Jeff Johnson said Ruiz-Quezada took evasive action to avoid a collision, swerving to the right side of the road, but hit gravel along the side of 101, lost control of the vehicle and spun into the southbound lanes. As her car entered the other lane of traffic, she hit a southbound Cowtown truck, and her car became lodged underneath the fourth axle of the 18-wheeler. The truck, driven by Ruiz Segundo, 54, of Fort Worth drug the car “a couple hundred feet,” according to Johnson.

Ruiz-Quezada was pronounced dead at the scene by Precinct 1 Justice of the Peace Jan Morrow.

Segundo was transported to Wise Regional Health System in Decatur by Medic 2, but Trooper Patrick Alonzo said he did not appear to be seriously injured. Hothouse was not injured.

Seven DPS troopers were called to the scene, as well as Chico Fire Department. The roadway was still shut down as of 8 p.m.