The driver of a 1941 Chevy pickup truck has died after his car crashed head on into a tree at an Orcutt apartment complex.

The Santa Barbara County Fire Department responded to the crash site at 1458 Oakridge Park Road, after the car rapidly accelerated, went over a concrete curb and hit a tree just after 4 p.m. on Monday.

First responders found a man in cardiac arrest and transported him via ambulance to Marian Regional Medical Center, where he was pronounced deceased.

Fire officials would not speculate whether it was the man's condition that caused the crash, or vice versa.

"We can’t make that determination in the field," fire engineer Glen Dupont said. 

The California Highway Patrol is withholding the identity of the 51-year-old-driver, from Santa Maria, pending notification of his family. 

The CHP did respond, as well as a CALSTAR helicopter, which landed in a field nearby but was not utilized for the transport. According to the CHP report the cause of the accident is still under investigation, however alcohol or drugs appear to be a factor in the incident.

 

Abby Hamblin covers city government in Santa Maria and Guadalupe for Lee Central Coast Newspapers. Follow her on Twitter: @AbbyHamblin.

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