A pickup rollover crash on Skyway Drive in Santa Maria closed the westbound lanes from Highway 135 to Auto Park for more than an hour Friday night as police investigated, firefighters threw absorbent material on crankcase oil and a tow truck operator cleared away the wreckage.
The driver of the late-model maroon extended-cab Chevrolet pickup apparently extricated himself or herself from the smashed cab and fled.
Santa Maria police officers on scene couldn’t provide any information about the crash, but it appeared the driver had been southbound on Skyway about 8:15 p.m. and failed to negotiate the curve just west of Highway 135.
The pickup struck the center island at Auto Park, flattening the metal caution signs and launching the vehicle into multiple rolls until it came to a stop on its roof and hood in front of the Skyway Center.
A resident of Miles Avenue, more than 1,000 feet from the site, said his wife heard the crash and thought it was a four-car pileup because there were three distinct impact sounds.
The rolling pickup lost its tonneau cover and spewed contractor’s tools across both westbound lanes, littering the asphalt with tool boxes, open-end and allen wrenches, pneumatic hand tools, a compressor, a hard hat, drywall tape, orange buckets, a floor jack and hundreds of screws and nails, among other items.