Semi-truck driver in Cajon Pass incident was leaving Imperial Valley

Grimmway Farms manager responds to video

EL CENTRO, Calif. - The video of a semi-truck dragging a car behind it on the Cajon Pass has more the 5.5 million views on Facebook.

The driver of the semi, 62 year old Pete Edward Maestas, was pulling a trailer from Imperial Valley, but is employed with Mike Lowery Trucking out of Bakersfield, California.

News 11’s Nico Payne spoke with a manager of the local Grimmway Farms and a local truck driver who once worked with Maestas.

 “When you’re traveling at 80,000 pounds over the road and a car at 2,000 pounds which is still heavy, I mean, you might not feel it,” said Jorge Rodriguez, local truck driver.

Rodriguez who has been a truck driver for eight years says it hard to say what he might of done because he hasn't been in an accident himself.

He did meet the drive of the semi and tell us that he was mechanically inclined.

 “As far as his abilities of a driver, a class a drive and how well it may be, I cannot say,” added Rodriguez.

The El Centro CHP tell us that this type of incident is not as uncommon as people may think and they want to remind drivers to always be alert.

 “The tractor trailer has a much larger blind spot than normal vehicles and a lot of times the vehicles are carrying so much weight that any collision that might feel like it's huge in a car would be only a slight bump to a commercial tractor trailer,” said Javier Amezcua with El Centro California Highway Patrol.

We were able to speak to Assistant Manager Jeff Calhoun of Grimmway Farms in Holtville.

He didn't want to speak on camera but did want to clarify that thought the truck was leaving the valley, the driver is not employed with Grimmway Farms as they outsource drivers during carrot harvesting season.

 “Stay focused, you never know what can happen on the road. I mean the highways especially, they’re unpredictable, I mean that's why they're called accidents,” explained Rodriguez.

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