Storm: 3 killed on wet roads; highway mountain passes open

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) Kern County's major highway mountain passes were open Saturday morning, but a late season winter storm still brought snow, rain and traffic problems.


Three people, including a 6-year-old girl, were killed Friday night in a pair of unrelated highway crashes. The California Highway Patrol blamed both crashes on unsafe speeds for the weather and road conditions.

A woman driving a Ford Mustang crashed into a big truck at Highway 99 and Rosedale Highway. The Mustang driver, 36-year-old Jamie Robertson, and one of her two child passengers were killed. Robertson's other passenger, a 10-year-old girl, suffered major injures, the CHP said.

Another crash on Hwy. 99 south of Highway 65, claimed the life of a man driving a pickup. He lost control, left the roadway and hit a light pole and tree.

That driver, whose name hasn't been released, was trapped and died as his truck burned, the CHP said.

Eyewitness News Chief Meteorologist Miles Muzio said the worst of the weather, which moved in midday Friday, should be over by Saturday morning. The area could get some lingering precipitation, and a Winter Weather Advisory is posted for the Kern County mountains through 11 a.m. Saturday.

Snow levels were forecast to fall to around 4,000 feet with up to an inch of snow possible on the roadways. But, as of 8 a.m. Saturday, the CHP posted no restrictions on either Interstate 5 over the Grapevine or Highway 58 through Tehachapi.

Muzio says snow showers will dot the mountains through midday Saturday, and winds will remain quite strong all weekend.

Highs on Saturday will only be in the mid 60s for the south valley and only the mid 40s in the mountains, Muzio says.

Sunday, winds will calm down, skies will begin to clear and temperatures will rise into the 70s.

High 80s are in the forecast by Tuesday.