Man dies in semi crash

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A Thornton man was killed after a tractor trailer he was driving veered off U.S. 85 and ended up on the railroad tracks.

Seth Ochoa, 30, was the only occupant in the Freightliner semi when it drifted off the west side of northbound U.S. 85 around 2:15 p.m. Jan. 30. Ochoa attempted to correct the truck, but lost control and crossed over the north and southbound lanes of traffic. The truck then “became airborne” and ended up on the Union Pacific train tracks, said Trooper Ryan Sullivan, public information officer for the Colorado State Patrol. Railroad traffic was stopped for a short time to enable emergency crews to clean up the crash debris.

Ochoa, who is originally from Garden City, Kan., was pronounced dead at the scene. No one else was injured.

Investigators said inattentive driving was likely the primary contributor to the crash; Ochoa was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident. It is unclear how fast the semi was going.

Ochoa’s myspace page is covered with messages of love and remembrance from friends and family members, who recall him as a drummer with a passion for life.

“We have so much history together, and I miss you terribly! The memories we shared will be cherished in my heart forever,” one friend wrote.

Funeral arrangements were not immediately available.

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