VISALIA, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – A four-car collision Friday night involving a DUI driver left drivers and their child passengers with moderate to major injuries in Visalia, according to the California Highway Patrol.
CHP says they responded to a multi-vehicle crash around 11:00 p.m. on State Route 198 and State Route 65.
Upon investigation, officials determined 32-year-old Ruben N. Martinez Jr. from Visalia was driving a Chevrolet Silverado westbound on State Route 198 approaching State Route 65 when a 40-year-old woman from Exeter driving her Infiniti QX60 southbound on State Route 65 entered the intersection. A 30-year-old woman from Woodlake was waiting at the eastbound State Route 198 left turning lane at State Route 65 in her Nissan Frontier along with a 29-year-old Porterville man in his Mazda 3 in the #2 lane.
Authorities say the Chevrolet entered the intersection facing a red light and collided into the left side of the Infiniti. This impact rolled the Infiniti southwesterly to its immediate right across the center median, colliding into the Nissan and Mazda.
As a result, CHP says Martinez Jr. and the driver of the Infiniti both suffered major injuries. The driver of the Infiniti also had five children passengers in the car ranging in age 6 to 13 who suffered moderate to major injuries. The drivers of the other two vehicles were uninjured.
California Highway Patrol believes Martinez Jr. was driving under the influence of alcohol and will be taken into custody after he is released from the hospital. The investigation is still ongoing.
Authorities say the kids are set to be released from the hospital sometime Saturday.