A 21-year-old woman died early Thursday morning when she lost control of her vehicle on southbound Highway 99 just north of Eight Mile Road, according to the California Highway Patrol.
The driver, whose name has not yet been released, was driving on the highway at a high rate of speed without a seat belt on when her 2002 Ford Focus drove off the west edge of the roadway and struck an oleander hedge, police said.
She was ejected from the vehicle and died on the scene as a result of her injuries. The accident occurred shortly before 1 a.m., police said.
Lodi resident Donald Snyder was traveling behind the vehicle when the driver lost control. He called emergency crews before circling back and checking on the status of the victim before help arrived.
"Both myself and another driver who witnessed it were checking for her pulse, but we couldn't find one," Snyder told the News-Sentinel on Thursday afternoon. "Her passenger was conscious, and said she could feel her legs but was trapped in the vehicle."
Snyder said he did not know anyone at the crash scene and was heading to visit a friend when he witnessed the accident.
The passenger, an unnamed 20-year-old female, sustained minor injuries in the collision. Alcohol is believed to have played a role in the crash, according to the California Highway Patrol.
Contact reporter Jordan Guinn at email@example.com.