Chattanooga: 6 in hospital after wrong-way interstate crash this morning

Chattanooga: 6 in hospital after wrong-way interstate crash this morning

July 23rd, 2011 by Staff Report in Local - Breaking News

Four adults and two children are in the hospital after a crash this morning involving a driver traveling the wrong way on I-24.

A black Dodge Ram driven by a Hispanic male heading the wrong way on east bound I-24 hit a Pontiac Torrent head on at approximately 3:46 a.m., police said. A Hyundai following the Pontiac was unable to avoid the crash and was also involved.

An East Ridge Police officer traveling east bound observed the crash near the S. Seminole overpass and stopped to render aid. The officer observed the Hispanic male attempting to leave the scene, police said. The officer was able to apprehend the suspect.

East Ridge Fire and Rescue personnel had to use the Jaws-of-Life to extricate at least one victim from the Pontiac, police said. Due to the extreme heat conditions one firefighter was treated for possible heat exhaustion.

The two vehicles involved in the crash were family members traveling together from Kentucky to Florida, police said.

East Ridge Police traffic investigators have been unable to identify the Hispanic male suspect who caused the crash because he has provided 2 different identifications with different names on each one, police said.

Investigators have charged the suspect with DUI, four counts of Vehicular Assault, six counts of Reckless Endangerment, Implied Consent law, and Driving without a License. The suspect is scheduled to appear in East Ridge Municipal Court on Tuesday, July 26, at 5 p.m.