A young civil engineering graduate student was killed early morning Nov. 23 as the car he was riding in struck a guardrail on a treacherous stretch of Highway 1 in Northern California.
Sanjeev Joshi, 23 when he died, was a graduate civil engineering student at California State Polytechnic University, which he had attended since 2008. Joshi originally hailed from Fresno, Calif. His parents could not be reached for comment.
Joshi was one of four passengers in a 2008 BMW driven by fellow Cal Poly student Ryan James Reisenberger. The diver and the two other passengers — Bo “Andrew” Thompson of Carmichael, Calif., and Nicolas Licouris of San Luis Obispo, Calif. — complained of injuries and were taken to San Francisco General Hospital, where they were treated for broken bones and fractures.
Joshi was pronounced dead on the scene. The San Mateo County coroner has not yet released a report determining the cause of death.
Reisenberger was arrested on charges of drunken driving and is being held at San Mateo County jail on bail of $250,000. He has not posted bail in the two weeks since the fatal incident.
Officer Mike Ferguson, of the Golden Gate Division of the California Highway, told India-West Reisenberger was driving at a really high speed, though he could not say how fast. The stretch of highway where the Highway 1 tunnel ends into Pacifica is a particularly difficult road to navigate, said Ferguson, adding that at the south end of the tunnel, the highway starts to curve to the left.
Reisenberger did not successfully negotiate the curve and crashed into a guardrail. The crash caused Joshi – who was sitting in the front seat with his belt buckle on – to be partially ejected from the car. The right side took the brunt of the accident, said Ferguson, noting that he has seen similar incidents with only partial ejections where the victim had died underneath the crush of a vehicle that is still slightly moving.
Ferguson did not say what Reisenberger’s blood alcohol level was that night, but local media have reported that it was .12.
From various sources, India-West has learned that all four men were students or alumni at Cal Polytechnic in San Luis Obispo and belonged to the Sigma Nu fraternity.
The Mustang News – Cal Poly’s student publication – published an e-mail from Sigma Nu president Jason Ferrel. “This weekend the Kappi Pi chapter of Sigma Nu Fraternity lost a great man, brother, and friend to the eternal chapter,” he said.
“Brother Joshi was a brother that exemplified the meaning of love, truth and honor in everything he did. Please keep the friends, family and brothers of Sanjeev in your thoughts and prayers and help celebrate a life that left a positive impact on so many,” said Ferrel