3 hospitalized after vehicle veers into oncoming traffic

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OCEANSIDE, Calif. — Three people were taken to hospitals when their car veered off state Route 78 and careened into oncoming traffic on a frontage road, the California Highway Patrol said Saturday.

The crash happened Friday afternoon near the intersection of Vista Way and Valley Glen Drive in Oceanside, according to CHP Officer Mark Latulippe.

At about 4:45 p.m., a 20-year-old woman driving a Buick, headed westbound on Route 78, began to drift to the right for unknown reasons before driving through a chain link fence and into the path of a Nissan van and a Ford Thunderbird heading east on Vista Way, Latulippe said.

The Buick struck the Thunderbird head-on and sideswiped the van, causing a boat the van was towing to release and crash into two more cars heading west on Vista Way.

Emergency crews had to free the occupants of the Buick from their crumpled sedan, Latulippe said. The driver and a front passenger were both airlifted to Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, and a rear passenger was taken to Palomar Medical Center in Escondido.

No one else was seriously hurt.

Vista Way was closed for nearly two hours after the crash. The incident remains under investigation, but drugs and alcohol aren’t suspected to be factors in the collision, Latulippe said.

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