4 killed and 6 hurt in California highway head-on crash

July 28, 2022 GMT

RIO VISTA, Calif. (AP) — Four people were killed and six were injured in a head-on crash between a sedan and an SUV carrying a Mexican family of seven on a one-week California vacation, authorities said.

The crash on a two-lane highway in the San Francisco Bay Area that is notorious for collisions happened Wednesday night in the small city of Rio Vista, about 60 miles (97 kilometers) from San Francisco, Rio Vista Police Chief John Mazer said.

He said the three occupants of the sedan traveling in the westbound lane were killed after the driver went off the road, overcorrected, entered the eastbound lane and collided with the SUV. The driver and the rear passenger were ejected from the car, Mazer said in a statement Thursday.

The driver was identified as a 20-year-old man from Rancho Cordova, near Sacramento. The passengers killed were two 19-year-old women, including the owner of the car who is from Vacaville, Mazer said. Their identities were withheld pending notification of next of kin.

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A passenger in the SUV, Laura Poiret, in her 70s, was also killed, Mazer said.

Six of her family members, including an 8-year-old girl, were injured and hospitalized in stable condition, he said.

Police found numerous opened alcoholic beverage containers at the crash scene near the sedan and were investigating whether drunk driving was a crash factor, said Mazer, who called the crash the worst he has seen on the highway.

While the speed limit on the stretch of State Route 12 where the accident happened is 55 mph (88 kph), many people drive faster, Mazer said.

“People see wide open roads and they just go for it and often it ends like this,” he said.