A Fullerton woman was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence following a crash on North Coast Highway that left her and four other people injured, including a child, the California Highway Patrol reported Tuesday.
Kathia Isabel Rodriguez, 19, was southbound on the coastal highway near El Morro Elementary School in Laguna Beach when the 2004 Ford Explorer she was driving veered into the northbound lanes and up an embankment before overturning and ending up back in the northbound lanes about 9:10 p.m. Monday, according to CHP Officer Ray Scheidnes.
The SUV then slammed into a 2006 Dodge Grand Caravan traveling north on North Coast Highway, just south of the school, and overturned, the CHP reported.
A man and woman, both 19-year-old Anaheim residents, were ejected from the Explorer and were taken to area hospitals with critical injuries, Scheidnes said. A 10-year-old Anaheim girl in the Explorer suffered minor injuries and was taken to Children’s Hospital of Orange County, he said.
Rodriguez was taken to Orange County Global Medical Center in Santa Ana for treatment of minor injuries, then placed under arrest on suspicion of felony DUI causing injuries as well as driving in the wrong direction, Scheidnes said.
The driver of the Dodge — a 65-year-old Portland man — escaped injury. His passenger, a 56-year-old Portland woman, suffered minor injuries, Scheidnes said.
The busy thoroughfare was closed until 12:50 Tuesday morning for the crash investigation.
—City News Service