OAKHURST – A collision between a truck and a motorcycle on Highway 41 yesterday has claimed the life of a Coarsegold man.
On Tuesday, Apr. 15, at approximately 4 p.m. Michael Baize, 29, was northbound on Highway 41 on a Suzuki motorcycle just south of Road 620 at an unknown rate of speed.
Alvaro Pena, 46, of Madera, was southbound in a Ford F550 towing a trailer at a stated speed of 55 mph.
For unknown reasons and based upon witness statements, Baize turned his head to his left and took his eyes off of the roadway ahead of him, allowing his motorcycle to veer to the left across the solid double yellow lines and into the path of the oncoming truck, according to CHP.
Pena hit the brakes, but but was unable to avoid colliding with the bike. Baize was ejected from the motorcycle, and even though he was wearing a helmet, he sustained major injuries and was airlifted by CHP helicopter H-40 to Community Regional Medical Center in Fresno where he later passed away. Neither Pena nor any of the three other passengers in the truck was injured.
Highway 41 was blocked for approximately 2 hours as Cal Trans assisted with one-way traffic control.
This collision is still under investigation.