Victims identified in deadly chain-reaction crash on Highway 101 in Sunnyvale

California Highway Patrol investigators are searching for answers in a deadly, multi-vehicle accident Monday morning in Sunnyvale that claimed the lives of three people.

One of the victims killed was identified as South San Francisco resident Tyler Rasay, 28.

Family members said Rasay loved snowboarding in Tahoe on the weekends and his Toyota GT sports car.

Rasay was among three people killed in the aftermath of a six vehicle pile-up on northbound Highway 101 in Sunnyvale.

"It’s terrible. My kids, they’re young too. They went to San Jose State. It’s sad to hear because he’s just starting his life, and his life ended just like that," said Sue, a neighbor of Rasay who did not want to give her last name.


3 dead, 5 injured in chain-reaction crash on Hwy 101 in Sunnyvale

Three people died and five were injured early Monday after a series of crashes on Highway 101 in Sunnyvale that spanned both sides of the freeway. CHP said those that died had gotten out of their cars after crashing and were walking on the freeway.

Twisted metal, broken glass and debris littered both directions of the highway after the crash, which occurred around 12:25 a.m.

Investigators said the driver of a Ford pickup truck traveling northbound on Highway 101 crashed into the median near Fair Oaks Avenue. That set off a chain reaction involving five other vehicles.

"Several of the drivers or passengers got out of their vehicles at the time. So additional vehicles that were traveling northbound, unable to avoid a collision, crashed into several of these vehicles, causing at least three fatal injuries," said CHP officer Ross Lee, with the San Jose office.

In addition to Rasay, the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner said 24-year-old Paul Dennig of Mountain View, and Nicacio Negrete Gutierrez, a 53-year-old.

Investigators said two of the three men killed were knocked over the median and struck by oncoming traffic. They were knocked into the southbound lanes of the freeway.

That scene is being treated as a separate incident.

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Three other drivers, an 18-year-old, a 28-year-old, and a 38-year-old suffered serious injuries. Two of them are being treated at Stanford Medical Center.

Investigators said they do not believe alcohol or drugs played a role in the initial accident, or subsequent collisions.

As the CHP works to unravel clues from debris, three families are preparing for funerals.

"It’s really sad. It could be my son, it could be your son. It could be anybody’s son," said Sue.

The county medical examiner’s office said the third man's identity will be released once his family is notified.

Jesse Gary is a reporter based in the station's South Bay bureau. Follow him on Twitter, @JesseKTVU and Instagram, @jessegontv.