Investigators believe that speed was the primary factor in a rollover crash that left three people dead and seven others hospitalized in Winnetka Sunday night.
The crash occurred about 9 p.m. as a dark-colored older-model Ford Explorer with four occupants was traveling eastbound on Vanowen Street just east of Corbin Avenue, Los Angeles Police Department Captain Andrew Neiman said.
“The speed limit here is 35 mph. Preliminarily, we believe that this Ford Explorer must have been going in the range of somewhere close to 65 or 70 mph. Way too fast,” Neiman said.
Investigators determined the Explorer hit a large dip as it approached the intersection of Corbin and went out of control due to how fast it was traveling.
It then went into the westbound lanes and collided with a Toyota Tacoma truck, also with four occupants, before rolling over a couple of times and hitting a third vehicle with two occupants, Neiman said.
Three of the four occupants in the Explorer were likely not wearing seat belts and died at the scene after being ejected from the vehicle.
The fourth occupant was wearing a seatbelt and was transported to the hospital with “remarkably very minor injuries at this time,” Neiman said.
None of the occupants have been identified but Los Angeles Fire Department officials did say the deceased are aged 25, 30 and 30.
The four people in the Toyota were transported to the hospital with injuries that did not appear to be life threatening.
A pregnant woman and her husband who were traveling in the third vehicle were also hospitalized but expected to be OK, according to Neiman.
“At his point it appears that speed is the primary collision factor of this tragedy,” Neiman said as he warned drivers against traveling at such excessive speeds. “Get home safe.”
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