A woman killed by a giant hazardous-materials truck while crossing the street in West L.A. this morning has been identified as 63-year-old Kelly Shimizu, according to KTLA.
Shimizu was in the Santa Monica Boulevard crosswalk that cuts across the entrance to the 405 North when the big rig struck her down.
LAPD officers say the driver of the truck never stopped to help, and continued onto the 405 — though they're unsure whether that person knew Shimizu had been hit. However, it seems the driver may have been eluding cops all day:
LAPD media relations said earlier in the day that the company who owns the hazmat truck was cooperating, and assisting to locate the driver — yet a suspect couldn't be located.
Later in the day, the truck was located in Compton, with still no word on the driver. Investigators are currently inspecting the vehicle.
Updates to come. Here's some ABC7 footage from the scene:
Did you know Kelly, or witness the accident? Share below.
Update: Police have identified the driver, and think he may not have noticed Shimizu in the crosswalk. From the City News Service report:
The 64-year-old driver, a Whittier resident, was driving a 1990 Volvo tractor with a double trailer west on Santa Monica Boulevard. The collision occurred when he made a right turn to northbound Cotner. One trailer struck and killed Shimizu. …
There was no evidence of alcohol or drug intoxication and the “collision appeared to be a tragic accident,'' police said.
Weekly commenters note that the spot where Shimizu was killed is something of a death trap. One says: “This intersection is always busy and a lot of times pedestrians need to run in crossing said lane just to avoid getting hit by a car or truck.” And another: “I often cross that street to get to Subway. Had a lot of close calls myself. Something needs to be done.”