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Fatal overdose mistaken for pedestrian collision

Emergency crews responding to a fatal drug overdose at a hotel in downtown San Francisco this morning also assisted with two vehicle collisions on the same block, police and fire officials said.

Correction 11:50 a.m.
In an earlier version of this story, San Francisco fire officials said a pedestrian was fatally struck by a vehicle. They have since clarified that the death was a drug overdose unrelated to vehicle collisions on the same block. This updated story contains the correct information.

San Francisco fire spokeswoman Jen Balestrieri initially reported that a pedestrian was fatally struck in the 500 block of Jones Street, but has since clarified that there was not a fatal pedestrian collision, but rather a fatal overdose followed by two non-injury collisions.

One of the collisions involved a fire engine and another involved vehicles inside a parking garage, Balestrieri said. San Francisco police spokeswoman Officer Grace Gatpandan said a report of an unresponsive person at a hotel on Jones Street came in at 8:48 a.m.

Balestrieri said emergency crews responded to the hotel and declared the person dead at the scene. The identity of the person who died was not immediately being released.

While authorities were at the hotel, two vehicle collisions occurred outside and the emergency crews went over to assist, according to Balestrieri.

Gatpandan said one of the collisions happened inside a parking garage just across the street from the hotel. In that incident, a parking valet was bringing a vehicle around for a customer, but left the vehicle in gear on a ramp and then hopped out.

The vehicle rolled down the ramp, went over a railing and struck two vehicles and a water line, according to Gatpandan. Balestrieri said a pedestrian was also struck by the runaway vehicle, but was not transported to a hospital.

The water line struck by the runaway vehicle burst, causing water to flood the basement of the parking garage, Gatpandan said. Firefighters and San Francisco Department of Public Works crews responded to the garage to stop the flow of water and check on the pedestrian.

Gatpandan said the driver of a car on Jones Street also struck a parked fire engine at about the same time as when the runaway vehicle collision occurred. The collisions, as well as the fatal drug overdose, remain under investigation, according to police and fire officials. 

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