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Victims of deadly crash from Fortuna, returning from Ruth Lake

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HYDESVILLE- It's a road infamous for it's fatalities and it has claimed more lives.

“This is the largest collision the most deadly collision that we've handled since 2002 when we took a quadruple fatal on us 101 at Indianola cut off,” said Matt Harvey with the California Highway Patrol. “Very tragic. It affects the entire community.”

The collision occurred around 4:30 Sunday night on Highway 36 east of Hydesville near Fisher Road. Four occupants killed on impact, four others taken to local hospitals with serious injuries.

“At this point we're still working on which occupants were in which position in the vehicle,” Harvey said. “We do know that the majority of the occupants were in the rear of the pickup truck unrestrained.”

Doritos, backpacks and shoes were in the back of that truck, shedding light on a fun weekend gone wrong. The group was heading back to Fortuna from Ruth Lake. Several had swimsuits on when local authorities arrived on scene. Eight occupants in total were traveling in the vehicle. Four occupants sustained injuries, INCLUDING A 15 year old boy and a 15 year old girl from Fortuna, a 15 year old girl of Scotia and 21 year old Christopher Douglas Spencer of Fortuna. Each of these injured occupants are listed as in critical, but stable condition. 

The driver, 40 year old Daniel Morris, 32 year old Alicia Summerfield, 20 year old Savanna Ramirez and a 13 year old were killed instantly on a road that shows no forgiveness.

“Nearly 40 percent of the fatal collisions we took in 2013 were on highway 36,” Harvey said. “It can be a very dangerous stretch of roadway to drive just due to the fact that there's a lot of turns and blind curves. Very little shoulder. It's a very wooded area so if you do drive off the road chances are more than likely you're going to hit a tree.”

Two dogs were also rescued from the truck with major injuries. The cause of the crash is still under investigation.