A homeless woman thought to be in her mid to late 50s was struck and killed on Moffat Boulevard by a late model Lexus heading west just before the 120 Bypass overcrossing at about 7:30 Friday night.
She was pushing a red walker in the roadway reportedly against traffic when she was struck and her body thrown some 80 feet away to the west where it landed on the sidewalk. Her shoes ended up in the street.
The homeless woman had her red SUV parked in a commercial parking lot beyond the bypass for some two weeks. She had been seen coming in and out of the SUV in recent days. A dog had been sitting in the back seat when she had the side door left open as traffic passed by.
Relatives responded to the scene and took the dog home with them. Her crumpled red walker was found in weeds just beyond the sidewalk near the point of impact with the vehicle.
Manteca Police cordoned off the scene and called out the Major Accident Investigation Team that was expected to be working on the investigation for several hours before calling the coroner and opening Moffat to traffic.
The parking lot at the Manteca Commerce Center that’s closest to the 120 Bypass is a popular place for homeless to park in their vehicles. The Caltrans right-of-way along the south side of the 120 Bypass is also an area between Paseo Villas Apartments and the Highway 99 interchange that illegal homeless encampments are pitched and cleared out periodically by state road crews and police.
Over the past four years, 11 pedestrians have been killed in Manteca — seven by trains and four by cars. The pedestrians struck and killed by cars included a student walking to Shasta School, a man pushing his grandchild in a stroller who was hit midway across a crosswalk on Woodward Avenue by Woodward Park, and a man struck crossing Center Street just east of Main Street.
Three pedestrians were killed in Manteca last year. All were struck by trains. One was killed Aug. 7 while walking along Walnut Avenue. Another man was struck and killed July 26 by a northbound at the South Main Street crossing in downtown Manteca. In January of 2018, a 28-year-old man was killed a half mile to the south when he was struck by a train along Moffat Boulevard to the west of the Spreckels Avenue/Industrial Park Drive crossing. In that incident, witnesses said the man who was killed appeared to be sleeping on the tracks. Manteca averages two pedestrian railroad deaths a year.
In an effort to reduce the potential for deaths, Union Pacific has installed fencing from Industrial Park Drive to Center Street. In addition, seven years ago the city installed wrought iron fencing on the tracks near the skate park after youth were seen frequently cutting across the tracks to reach the skate park.
There were 125 traffic deaths in San Joaquin County last year including 29 pedestrians.