1 Killed, Several Injured in I-5 Rollover

A Ford Explorer carrying five people overturned near the San Clemente checkpoint

By Monica Garske
|  Saturday, Oct 13, 2012  |  Updated 3:48 PM PDT
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1 Killed, Several Injured in I-5 Rollover

Elena Gomez

A couple of hours after the rollover, traffic lanes began clearing on the northbound I-5 near San Clemente.

One person was killed and several were injured in a rollover accident on northbound Interstate 5 Saturday morning, California Highway Patrol officials confirmed.

According to the CHP, the crash happened around 8:15 a.m. just south of the San Clemente checkpoint.

Officials said a 22-year-old male driver from San Diego was driving his 2004 Ford Explorer occupied by four additional passengers when he saw traffic stopped ahead of him due to Border Patrol inspections at the checkpoint.

He was traveling at an unsafe rate of speed and turned his vehicle to the right in order to avoid colliding with the stopped traffic, officials said. The veering off the road caused the Ford Explorer to overturn and roll over several times off the roadway.

CHP said a 26-year-old unrestrained female passenger was ejected from the car. She suffered major injuries and was airlifted to Scripps La Jolla Hospital. CHP Officer Jim Bettencourt later confirmed she died at the hospital around 2:40 p.m.

Two additional female adult passengers and one male adult passenger suffered moderate to major injuries, officials said. They were also transported to Scripps La Jolla and Mission Viejo Hospital.

It is unclear if the driver was injured. No other vehicles were involved in the crash.

The cause of the accident is under investigation. CHP officials do not suspect drugs or alcohol were factors in the rollover.

A SigAlert was issued on northbound I-5 near the checkpoint, leaving traffic at a standstill for hours as officials investigated the scene of the crash. Lanes reopened several hours later.
 

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