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January 2, 2012
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Pedestrian killed on Highway 50 Douglas' first fatality of 2012

Authorities have not released the name of the victim in Douglas County's first fatal accident of 2012.

The accident occurred 12:44 a.m. New Year's Day when a 21-year-old Walnut Creek, Calif., man walking in the eastbound lanes of Highway 50 was hit by a vehicle.

According to the Nevada Highway Patrol, the man was struck from behind by a 2011 Ford Expedition California Highway Patrol vehicle driven by Officer Joshua J. Varanini, 38 of Truckee.

According to the Nevada Highway Patrol, the man was walking in the left eastbound lane wearing denim jeans and a black jacket.

Varanni stepped on the breaks and steered to the right to avoid the walker, but the vehicle's left front hit the man and forced him into the opposing westbound lanes where he was hit by a passenger shuttle.

NHP Trooper Chuck Allen said the accident forced the closure of the highway for almost four hours. Eastbound traffic was rerouted out of the area via State Route 207, Kingsbury Grade, while westbound traffic was turned around near the scene. The highway was completely reopened at approximately 4:36 am.

The name of the victim has not been released yet.

Troopers from the Nevada Highway Patrol Major Accident Investigation Team will be investigating this tragedy.

Witnesses or anyone with additional information regarding this tragedy should contact Trooper Eric Gallagher at (775) 689-4661 regarding case number NHP-120100102.


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Tahoe Daily Tribune Updated Jan 2, 2012 01:29PM Published Jan 2, 2012 01:27PM Copyright 2012 Tahoe Daily Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.