Posts Tagged ‘Nimitz Freeway’

I was in Oakland during the Earthquake. I lived two blocks from the Cypress freeway and was literally probably the first person to scale the collapsed freeway to assist the injured and search for individuals under the pancaked freeway. I ran down the street moments after the quake hit, and ascended a ladder that was being put up against the freeway before it even settled. I could see the Marina burning from the deck of the freeway and crawled under about 12 sections of the freeway looking for survivors.

I found a couple, and helped one man pinned in his car by a enormous block of cement that pinned him in the front seat. I witnessed numerous dead bodies and crushed cars. There were two powerful aftershocks that hit while crawling on the freeway. I crawled over the freeway until it was dark and continued to assist when rescue teams finally arrived.

I no longer live in Oakland, but miss the community greatly. Two years after the earthquake I saved four homes in the Oakland fire with another man with three garden hoses from burning down including his home…I love the Bay Area….My home away from home…

By Lucas Kenna Mertes


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Ed McVee, a trucker who was driving a Chevron freight truck on the Cypress Viaduct at just about 5:00, spoke to National Geographic about what it was like to barely escape from the viaduct’s collapse: his truck stopped beneath the only top deck section that didn’t crumble in the earthquake. In Nature’s Fury!, a video put out in 1994, he said:

There was no traffic, I was doing about 55, and all of a sudden it felt like I had a blowout. I had no control over the truck. Luckily there was nobody beside me because I was just all over the place. I hit the brakes. In the rearview mirror I could see what looked like the freeway falling, and that didn’t make any sense. I saw cars and trucks disappearing underneath the rubble. And I just knew I was dead. I had no way of getting out of it; there was nothing I could do.

I don’t deal with it as well as people think I do. I can be driving along anywhere, and all of a sudden I’ve got freeway falling down on top of me.

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