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UPDATE: San Jose Faces Alarming Spike In Traffic Fatalities To Start 2022

SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) -- Police in the South Bay on Wednesday were still investigating a double-fatal accident Tuesday night that raised the already high traffic death count for 2022 in San Jose.

Two pedestrians were killed and a third was injured in the accident on the northbound lanes of Almaden Expressway near Foxworthy Avenue just before 8:30 p.m. Tuesday evening.

The victims became the sixth and seventh people to die in traffic collisions in the city this year. Last year at this time, there was only one.

"Kids were left without their dad. Wives were left without their husbands," said Melissa Valentin, who says her 38-year-old cousin was one of the victims.

The Santa Clara County Coroner's Office has not officially identified the victims.

Investigators said a white sedan had a green light and was approaching the intersection of Almaden Expressway and Foxworthy Avenue when it ran over and killed two men and injured a woman who were trying to cross the street.

The driver was also injured by a broken windshield and air bag.

"All three of these pedestrians were not utilizing a crosswalk. We're not trying to do any victim blaming, but that is just a fact that happened in this collision," said San Jose Police Sgt. Christian Camarillo.

Valentin said her family heard from the survivor that her cousin may have helped save her life.

"The female he was with and another friend, he tried to push them out of the way," she said. "And that's like him, always looking out for the people he cares about."

"It's sad and it's frustrating," said Colin Heyne with San Jose's Department of Transportation.

The department has been trying in vain to reduce fatal collisions under a seven-year-old "Vision Zero" plan, which aims to reduce speeds on troubled roadways.

Heyne says Almaden is a corridor of concern because of the way it cuts through neighborhoods and shopping centers.

"San Jose is a large sprawling city and these expressways were put in to make it easy to get around by car. They also make it easy to go fast," Heyne said.

The speed limit on the expressway is 45 miles per hour, but drivers often go faster.

Police said speeding, alcohol and drugs do not appear to be factors in this case at this time. The driver is cooperating with investigators.

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