Speed a factor in Paul Walker crash

23:50, Dec 01 2013
paul walker
SHARPLY DRESSED: US actor Paul Walker on the catwalk during Sao Paulo Fashion Week in March 2013.
Actors Paul Walker, Vin Diesel and Tyrese Gibson
BIG NIGHT: Actors Paul Walker, Vin Diesel and Tyrese Gibson at the premiere of Fast & Furious 6 in London earlier this year.
Paul walker
Paul Walker: The US actor, 40, is dead following a car crash.
Paul Walker
A girl places flowers at the scene of the car crash where actor Paul Walker was killed in the Santa Clarita area of Los Angeles.
Paul Walker
Firefighters extinguish the fire in the car where actor Paul Walker and his friend Roger Rodas were killed.
Paul Walker
Fans gather and place flowers at the scene of a fiery crash that killed Fast and Furious actor Paul Walker.
Paul Walker
Paul Walker (right) with co-stars Vin Diesel and Elsa Pataky at the premiere of the film Fast and Furious 5.

Fans of Fast & Furious star Paul Walker have created a makeshift memorial at the site where a car he was riding in crashed, killing the actor and a friend.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department says speed was a factor in the one-car crash in the community of Valencia, about 48km northwest of downtown Los Angeles. Deputies found a 2005 red Porsche Carrera GT engulfed in flames when they arrived on Saturday afternoon (Sunday, NZ time).

On Sunday, fans of Walker, 40, gathered to leave flowers, candles and memorabilia from the action film franchise.

Walker's publicist said that the other person in the car was Roger Rodas, a friend of Walker's who owned a sport car dealership in Valencia.

Ame Van Iden said the actor was the passenger, though the sheriff's department did not confirm that.

The Porsche crashed into a light pole and tree and burst into flames.

Sheriff's deputy Peter Gomez said investigators are working to determine how fast the car was travelling and what caused it to go out of control, including whether the driver was distracted or something in the road prompted him to swerve.

Last photo of Fast and Furious star Paul Walker. pic.twitter.com/jO2zQNkVta


Walker and Rodas had attended a fundraiser benefiting victims of the recent typhoon in the Philippines. The event was held by Walker's Reach Out Worldwide, a charity he founded in 2010 to aid victims of natural disasters.

The fundraiser and toy drive took place at Rodas' custom car shop, Always Evolving. Attendees rushed to the nearby crash to try to put out the flames with fire extinguishers.

Bill Townsend, who attended the event, told AP Radio that Walker appeared very happy at the fundraiser.

"He was smiling at everybody, just tickled that all these people came out to support this charity," Townsend said.

"He was doing what he loved. He was surrounded by friends, surrounded by cars."

The Fast & Furious star had been on break from shooting the seventh instalment of the Universal Pictures franchise. Production began in September and while much of the film has been shot, it's incomplete.

Universal has not yet said what it plans to do with Fast & Furious 7, which is currently slated for release in July.

"Your humble spirit was felt from the start," Ludacris, Walker's Fast & Furious co-star, said on Twitter.

"Wherever you blessed your presence you always left a mark, we were like brothers."

Ludacris' girlfriend, Eudoxiee, posted a photo of Walker with a puppy.

 

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His Fast & Furious co-star Vin Diesel posted a photograph of him and Walker arm-in-arm on Instagram with the message: "Brother I will miss you very much. I am absolutely speechless."


Dwayne The Rock Johnson also took to Twitter.

Walker rode the Fast & Furious franchise to stardom, starring in all but one of the six action blockbusters, beginning with the first film in 2001. The blond-haired, blue-eyed Los Angeles-native brought California surfer good-looks and an easy, warm charm to the popular street-racing series.

Walker is survived by his 15-year-old daughter.

He stars in the upcoming Hurricane Katrina drama Hours, which Lionsgate's Pantelion Films is to release on December 13. He also stars in Brick Mansions, a remake of the French action film District B13 that Relativity plans to release next year.

AP