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Multi-car crash on Southern Calif. freeway leaves 6 dead



POMONA, Calif. (AP) -- A wrong-way driver on a Southern California freeway was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving after causing a pre-dawn crash with multiple vehicles Sunday that left six people dead, a highway patrol officer told the Los Angeles Times.

Police arrested the 21-year-old female driver on suspicion of felony driving under the influence and felony manslaughter in connection with the 4:40 a.m. accident on the westbound Pomona freeway, or State Route 60, in Diamond Bar, said Rodrigo Jimenez, a California Highway Patrol spokesman on the scene, who spoke to the Los Angeles Times, (http://lat.ms/1fQrEWe ).

The female driver was in serious condition at a Los Angeles County hospital with a broken femur and a ruptured bladder, Jimenez said.

Authorities were seeking blood tests.

Investigators "believe from what they found in the vehicle that alcohol was involved," Los Angeles County Coroner's Lt. Fred Corral told the newspaper.

Jimenez said the woman was traveling east in a red Chevy Camaro when it collided head-on with a red Ford Explorer. The sequence of events involving the other vehicles was not immediately clear. At least two people were ejected from their vehicles.

Four people were pronounced dead at the scene, and two people died at an area hospital, authorities said. The freeway lanes in both directions were closed for hours Sunday.

Jimenez told the newspaper as he stood near the crumpled vehicles that it was "a horrific collision."

"This tragedy is 100 percent preventable," he said.

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Braun Cattle February 10 2014 at 3:31 PM

Brauncattleco@aol.com I am sixty-five yrs old, and I grew up hearing stories of my Mothers sad life with her Irish father. who caused my Grandmother to file for divorce, back in those days divorces were granted by the State. and I never started drinking because of the stories Mother told me. I really don't understand why drinking is allowed, so many lives have been lost to drunk drivers, not to mention family violence . It just makes no sence to me. A waitress in my town was raising three children , she was a soccer Mom, and a doteing Mother. She went out on a date one Saturday, her date had been drinking, she was not wearing a seat belt. it was not mandatory . He had a head on collision , the Mother of three children, flew, thru. the windshield and left three orphans at home. It has haunted me for yrs. WHY WHY,WHY, does the law allow innocent people to suffer.

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Shawn February 10 2014 at 3:55 PM

I never want to have to read one more comment on this board or any other about the heartfelt condolences for the victims of drunk driving! I want this BS criminal behavior to STOP! And if our government wanted it to also, then they would give more than lip service to the problem of driving under the influence or even while distracted. Do other countries really have this problem? Or is it only the US that has a bleeding heart for drunk drivers? Enough, already! The victims' families want their loved ones back.... all the condolences in the world are platitudes that give no real comfort. It is way past time to put laws on the books that will stop this criminal behavior!

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Jan Shawn February 10 2014 at 8:45 PM

Thank you Shawn! Really - how did the bars and restaurants expect their patrons to get home? I know it's not just them ... some drunks will drink ANYWHERE ... but it's a start.
No drinks unless you can prove you are NOT driving.

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1 reply
ikneel Jan February 10 2014 at 10:58 PM

The problem with your solution Jan is that the vast MAJORITY of us CAN drink responsibly, a tall cold beer w/a burger, a dry white wine with our 4 star entree and STILL be able to drive responsibly too! I'm REALLLLLLLLLY tired of having more and more of my freedoms of choice taken away because a few idiots can't behave responsibly!

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kimcrdr February 10 2014 at 2:38 PM

So tired of reading things like this, 6 dead and yet the drunken fool is the one that walks away, I hope they put her in prison the REST of her life, so sick of drunk drivers, they really need to implement a sentence that is fitting for killing 6 people, I hope and pray she doesn't get a slap on the wrist and let go, sending prayers for all the family and friends of the deceased!!!

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1 reply
homeinsulation kimcrdr February 10 2014 at 3:19 PM

I agree but I don't think drunk drivers really consider the consequences. We need to state from the outset: get caught drunk behind the wheel, you lose your license for 10 years, pay $25k in fines, serve 2000 communicty service hours and spend 2 weeks in jail...that's the 1st offense. 2nd offense is life in prison where they have to work or rot in a cage. Nobody has to drink, it's a choice and we need to present a horrific consequence to alter behavior like this.

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Brian Workman February 10 2014 at 2:01 PM

"This tragedy is 100 percent preventable," he said. If we would only put the CHP back onto our highways, instead of the CHP contracting out to the suburbs like common city street cops, looking for illegaly parked cars!!

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Cathy February 10 2014 at 2:34 PM

Does the Judicial system seem to not take death due to DWI or DUI as a serious offense? These impaired people consciously take alcohol or drugs, no one forces them to so as far as I am concerned this is pre-meditated and should carry life in prison, they kill the elderly the young, middle aged and children and infants and just get a slap on the wrist.
Lest we forget if you are wealth and young you suffer from being spoiled and so for God's sake we just can not send this young man to prison for the death of 4 people.
I am so damn tired of the laws who let these people on the streets after 5, 10, 20 DUI's put them behind bar's for life.

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Shirley February 10 2014 at 1:52 PM

So sad, and usually the person that causes such deaths survives.

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homeinsulation February 10 2014 at 3:20 PM

I don't think drunk drivers really consider the consequences or penalties if caught. We need to state from the outset: get caught drunk behind the wheel, you lose your license for 10 years, pay $25k in fines, serve 2000 communicty service hours and spend 2 weeks in jail...that's the 1st offense. 2nd offense is life in prison where they have to work or rot in a cage. Nobody has to drink alcohol, it's a choice and we need to present a horrific consequence to alter behavior like this.

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louierey February 10 2014 at 4:19 PM

Let's hope that California doesn't blow this case like Texas just did. A 16 year old boy, let me repeat that, a SIXTEEN YEAR OLD BOY, who was drunk (are you kidding me?) killed four people and seriously injured two others and was given PROBATION! Is that insane or what? His defense attoreny claimed that he suffers from, are you ready, "AFFLUENZA." He has been so spoiled rotten that he doesn't understand responsibility. This country is going to hell and it's picking up speed on a daily basis.

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rmoorebigdaddy February 10 2014 at 3:42 PM

Sorry for the families...

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rmoorebigdaddy February 10 2014 at 4:00 PM

This is an absolute shame. I am not against drinking, however I am against drunk driving. Call a cab, a family member or a friend for Christ sake. I have driven when I have been drinking and I regret it so much. I don't drink now but if I were to I would rather sleep it off in my car than to drive.
God be with the families of this horrendous wreck. God be with the driver as well.

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1 reply
larry rmoorebigdaddy February 10 2014 at 6:13 PM

Now really---------how many people do you know that have been drinking and possibly drunk would call a cab ??? Even responsible adults have a difficult time admitting after a few drinks they are impaired and should NOT drive. I would like to see some of the freeway ramps install "tire-popping-strips" in the pavement. if you enter the freeway going the wrong direction---------------it pops your tires and hopefully after that you will realize you are entering a freeway the wrong way.

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1 reply
ikneel larry February 10 2014 at 10:23 PM

How does one "ENTER" the freeway via a ramp going the WRONG way??? In reverse??? Can't think I've ever been on a ramp that didn't feed into a freeway going in the same direction. Maybe when she got to the end of the ramp she thought she needed to go the OTHER way so made a U-turn???? At that time of the morning prolly NOT a lot of traffic ....I dunno. It's just tragic!

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