Calif. Limo Driver Fire Mistook First Plea For Help

The driver of a limousine that burst into flames on a San Francisco Bay area bridge, killing five women, says he at first misunderstood what one of the passengers in the back was saying when she complained about smelling smoke.

Courtesy: David Solomon

The driver of a limousine that burst into flames on a San Francisco Bay area bridge, killing five women, says he at first misunderstood what one of the passengers in the back was saying when she complained about smelling smoke.

Orville Brown told the San Francisco Chronicle (http://bit.ly/10jcd0t ) that with the music up he initially thought the woman was asking if she could smoke. Seconds later, he said the women knocked again, this time screaming, "Smoke, smoke!" and "Pull over."

The fire broke out late Saturday night as the Lincoln Town Car crossed the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge on the south end of the bay.

The driver and four women got out, but five others were trapped, including the bride whose marriage they were celebrating.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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The mother of one of the survivors of a limousine fire that killed five women when it burst into flames as it traveled over the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge says the women were heading to a bachelorette party, and that bride-to-be was one of the people killed.

Rosita Guardiano told the San Francisco Chronicle that her daughter -- 42-year-old Mary Grace Guardiano of Alameda -- is in intensive care, where she's being treated for smoke inhalation.

Rosita Guardiano told the newspaper that the woman for whom the bridal shower was being thrown was to be married next month.

The name of the bride-to-be -- or of the other four women killed -- has not been released by officials.

The limo was carrying the nine women when caught on fire around 10 p.m. Saturday.

Authorities say the five women who died were trapped inside. The driver was the only person who escaped unhurt.


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