Auburn man dies in fiery freeway crash

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A freeway accident early Sunday morning left one man dead.

At about 12:10 a.m., 20-year-old Auburn resident  Fernando Ortega lost control at a curve on a westbound Interstate 80 connector road to northbound Highway 65, according to Officer David Martinez, California Highway Patrol spokesman.

Ortega drove off the roadway and the 2000 Chevy Trailblazer he was driving hit a tree, Martinez said.

The sport utility vehicle immediately ignited and became fully engulfed in flames, Martinez said.

Ortega, who was the only one inside the vehicle, succumbed to his injures, Martinez, said.

Rocklin Police Department officers assisted at the scene and the roadway was closed for about three hours, Martinez said.

The accident remains under investigation.

~ Jenifer Gee, Gold Country News Service