A man and a woman were killed Monday and a child seriously hurt when the disabled van in which they were riding was rear-ended on the San Gabriel River (605) Freeway by a car driven by a motorist arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, authorities said.
Both vehicles caught fire in the crash that occurred about 1 a.m. on the northbound freeway near Rosecrans Avenue, according to the California Highway Patrol.
A 52-year-old man and a 19-year-old woman, both from Paramount, died at the scene, the CHP reported. Their names were withheld, pending notification of their relatives.
Alex Barragan, 31, of Norwalk was booked on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, according to the CHP.
According to the CHP’s preliminary report, the 1999 Ford Windstar van “had become disabled within the No. 3 lane prior to the collision” with Barragan’s 2006 Infiniti M45 sedan.
“The Infiniti M45 was being driven northbound in the No. 3 lane at an undetermined speed before colliding with the rear of the disabled Ford Windstar,” the CHP reported. “Following the collision, both vehicles came to rest within the No. 2 lane and became fully engulfed in flames.”
The driver of the van, 22-year-old Martina Beshara of Paramount, suffered moderate injuries in the crash that killed two of her three passengers, the CHP reported. The third passenger — a 7-year-old girl — suffered major injuries, the CHP reported.
Barragan and his passenger, 22-year-old Monica Madrid of Norwalk, suffered minor injuries, the CHP reported.
All northbound lanes were closed while an investigation was conducted. Two lanes were reopened about 4:50 a.m., and the remaining lanes were reopened about 90 minutes later, the CHP reported.