A passenger in a BMW was killed Thursday when the speeding car careened down an embankment and slammed into two trees in the Santa Cruz mountains near the San Mateo/Santa Clara county line, a California Highway Patrol officer said.
CHP officers responded to reports of a smoking vehicle with an occupant still trapped inside off of Skyline Boulevard near Page Mill Road at about 2:10 p.m., CHP officials said.
According to the preliminary investigation, it appears the driver was speeding south on Skyline when he lost control of the car, veered into the northbound lane and then crashed down an embankment on the opposite side of the road, according to CHP Officer Art Montiel.
The car hit a tree 15 feet from the road and then another tree 40 feet from the road. The front passenger, a 18-year-old San Martin resident, was pronounced dead at the scene.
A rear passenger, a 19-year-old San Jose resident, suffered major injuries and was taken to Stanford Hospital for treatment. The driver, a 17-year-old San Jose resident, suffered only minor injuries, Montiel said.
As of about 5:20 p.m. Skyline was shut down in both directions while crews cleaned up the wreck.
Editor's note: CHP officials had said the victim was 19 years old. The coroner subsequently said he was 18. This story was changed to correct the age.