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Intoxicated Driver Leads to Fatality on Highway 180 in Multi-Vehicle Collision

An update to the 4-car pileup that took place on Saturday, November 22, 2014, on Highway 180.  One victim was killed in the vehicle collision, in Fresno County, at about 5:30 PM.

Samuel Melendrez, of Mendota, was driving a 1998 Ford F-150 pickup truck, eastbound on Highway 180.  At the same time a 2001 Chevrolet Silverado pickup, towing a horse trailer, was headed west on the freeway.

fatality fresno county car crash head-on dui orozco melendrez highway 180
picture by abc30

The driver of the Chevy, Orlando Orozco, of Dos Palos, suddenly swerved across the highway and smashed head-on into the other pickup truck.  Then two other eastbound vehicles crashed into the back of the two pickups.  The wreck occurred near San Mateo Avenue.

Melendrez was fatally wounded and died at the scene of the incident.

Orozco, who was suspected of drunk driving, suffered serious injuries.  He was taken to Community Regional Medical Center, in Fresno.  He was also arrested on driving while under the influence of alcohol.

One other victim was injured, a Kerman woman who was in one of the other vehicles involved in the pileup.  She was taken to the hospital for treatment.

Please give us a call, if you are a relative or are in touch with the family, and would like us to investigate this accident further. We are located in Visalia, just miles south of Fresno. Attorney John Rozier 559-713-0159 or online at