• A tire failure caused a truck/SUV to overturn and crash on the freeway. A 16-year-old boy was killed and his mother was airlifted to a hospital with major injuries.
• Around six hours later, the deceased boy’s father was critically injured in a head-on collision less than 2 miles from the scene of the boy’s fatal crash. He died at the hospital.
• The accidents are under investigation.
This horrible day of tragedy started just before 7 a.m., according to a report in the San Diego Union-Tribune.
California Highway Patrol Officer Brian Pennings said a 55-year-old mother and her 16-year-old son were traveling westbound on Interstate 8 in a black Toyota Tacoma at the time of the first freeway accident.
Witnesses said the Tacoma apparently had a tire failure near Dunbar Lane. The vehicle then went out of control, veered off of the freeway, and rolled over. The Tacoma landed on Olde Highway 80, where the teen was ejected. He was pronounced dead at the scene, Pennings said.
The boy’s mother suffered major injuries. She was airlifted via helicopter to Sharp Memorial Hospital to be treated. The nature and extent of her injuries was not released.
A little more than six hours later, at 1:30 p.m., the second accident occurred — less than two miles from the scene of the first accident, according to a Channel 10 News report.
The father of the teen who died earlier was driving eastbound on I-8 at the time. Authorities did not confirm whether the man had already been notified of his son’s death and his wife’s critical injury, so it is not known whether he was distraught while driving.
The man was driving his vehicle the wrong way on the freeway. One witness who commented on the Channel 10 News site said the man was driving at a speed of over 100 mph, but that has not been confirmed. CHP officials said only that his vehicle crossed over from the westbound to the eastbound side of the freeway, where it continued to travel against the flow of traffic.
The wrong-way vehicle crashed head-on into another vehicle near Tavern Road. The deceased teen’s father sustained critical injuries and was airlifted to a hospital to be treated. Paramedics were attempting to resuscitate the man while he was being transported. It was not known if he was expected to survive.
UPDATE: The father died at the hospital. Investigators say it may have been a suicide.
The two occupants of the other vehicle also suffered very serious injuries and were hospitalized. Details about their condition and the nature of their injuries were not released.
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