Los Angeles, CA- A 21 year-old California woman has been charged with felony drunken driving after causing a wrong-way crash that killed six early Sunday morning. This was the second of two deadly wrong-way collisions that took the lives of eleven people over the weekend.
According to authorities, Olivia Carolee Culbreath was traveling easy in the westbound lanes of 60 Freeway in Diamond Bar just after 4:00 a.m. Sunday morning when her red Camaro struck a Ford Explorer head-on. The Explorer was then struck by another vehicle, the Los Angeles times reported.
Police said Culbreath was traveling northbound on the southbound 57 Freeway before heading on to the 60 Freeway in the wrong direction.
Three women who were passengers in Culbreath’s car were pronounced dead on the scene. Two other women were taken to a local hospital where they later died.
A 47 year-old man who police believe was in the Explorer was also pronounced dead at the scene.
The man in the third vehicle only suffered minor injuries.
California Highway Patrol spokesman Rodrigo Jimenez said at least three of the women and the man were ejected from the vehicles.
According to the LA Times, one witness said Culbreath was traveling 100 mph, though police have not determined how fast the young woman was traveling.
Culbreath was seriously injured in the crash and is currently being treated for a ruptured bladder and broken femur. Police have arrested Culbreaht for suspicion of driving under the influence.
Jimenez said “This tragedy is 100% preventable,” according to the LA Times.
Police requested a blood test for Culbreath and found evidence in her vehicle which suggests alcohol was involved in the crash.
Culbreath has been charged with felony drunk driving and felony manslaughter.
Both directions of the 60 Freeway were closed for hours after the accident while police investigated the accident.
They have not released the names of the accident victims pending notification of their families.
This was the second fatal wrong way crash for the weekend.
In Florida, five people were killed on Interstate 275 in Tampa when a Ford SUV began traveling south in the northbound lanes and collided with a Hyundai Sonata just after 2 a.m. Sunday morning.
The driver of the SUV and four people in the Hyundai were killed instantly.
Immediately after the collision, the SUV was engulfed in flames. The Hyundai was also damage by fire.
The Hyundai passengers were members of the Sigma Beta Rho fraternity at the University of South Florida in Tampa, the Huffington Post reported.
Police said they could are still trying to identify the driver, but the extensive fire damage is making this difficult. They are unclear if alcohol played a role in this collision.
The penalties for causing a deadly drunk driving accident can be serious. Offenders typically face long jail sentences and need the help of an experienced DUI attorney. With legal help, a charged offender may be able to have their sentences reduced.