Skilled driving and a fortuitous green light on Angeles Crest Highway at Foothill Boulevard were credited for there being no serious injuries Friday after a big rig lost its brakes on the highway, entered a driveway at Hill Street Cafe, crashed into a wall, a garbage bin, a tree and six vehicles before coming to rest in the parking lot.
The drama, which drew local television crews and media helicopters to town, unfolded at about 6:50 a.m. Friday. James Bines, 43, of Florida and his passenger Willy Robinson, had been hauling a full load of onions through the high desert area in the 18-wheeler. They traveled over Angeles Crest Highway because, Bines said, he had received directions from his global positioning system that the highway, State Route 2, was the most direct route from there to Los Angeles.
The truck, fully loaded, was estimated to weigh 78,000 pounds and has Florida license plates. The lettering on the side of the truck identified it as belonging to D & H Transportation, Inc. in Florida.