Drugged driver causes freeway pileup, local residents injured

(Screenshot courtesy NBC)

(Screenshot courtesy NBC)

NEWHALL – A 54-year-old man believed to be high on meth drove his pickup truck in the wrong direction on the 14 Freeway Monday afternoon and caused a nine-vehicle collision that seriously injured a Lancaster resident and two Palmdale residents, authorities said.

The incident occurred around 4:35 p.m. Monday on the Antelope Valley (14) Freeway at Vasquez Rocks, according to a California Highway Patrol report.

Canyon Country resident Rick Allen Walker was driving his 1998 Dodge Ram pickup truck about 85 miles per hour when he entered the northbound lanes of the freeway, traveling  southbound from Escondido Canyon, according to the CHP report.

Walker passed two CHP officers, who were working a traffic collision on the right shoulder, before crashing head on into a Dodge 2500 pickup truck, the CHP report states.

The Dodge 2500 pickup truck’s driver  and his passenger sustained minor injuries, according to the report.

The crash started a started a chain reaction collision that involved a total of nine vehicles and left 13 people injured, according to the CHP report.

Fernando Lopez, 48, of Lancaster sustained major injuries, including a compound fracture to the left arm. Lopez was driving a 1998 Toyota Tacoma pickup truck.

Palmdale residents David Becker, 53, and Maryann Looram, 59, also sustained major injuries in the pileup. Both suffered broken backs and were transported to Henry Mayo Hospital.

Becker was driving a GMC Sonoma pickup truck and Looram was driving a 2001 Honda Accord.

Lancaster resident Myisha M. Hatfield complained of pain and sustained minor injuries in the collision, according to the CHP report. Hatfield,36, was driving a 2008 Infinity. All other injuries related to the collision were considered “minor,” the CHP report states.

Walker, the wrong way driver, sustained lacerations, and was transported to Antelope Valley Hospital for treatment. He is suspected of being under the influence of methamphetamine at the time of the collision, and he was arrested for driving under the influence of drugs and causing injury.

Once released from the hospital, Walker will be booked into L.A. County jail, the CHP report states.

The investigation is ongoing.

  8 comments for “Drugged driver causes freeway pileup, local residents injured

  1. Nelly
    June 18, 2013 at 5:00 pm

    I daughter’s husband had only seconds to make
    A quick move when he saw this guy right in front of him
    And as he moved the truck kept going crashing into the car behind him.
    My prayer go to all the injured people.

    • Dana DeNuzzi
      June 22, 2013 at 6:41 pm

      Dear Lord please help the people that were injured in this tragic accident please let them recovery and heal quickly and let the emotional toll that this incident would take on any one person be minimal I ask this to be true in the name of Jesus Christ today. Amen

  2. mick
    June 18, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    Meth has got to be the worst drug ever! I feel for all the innocent people who were hurt and/or now have to go through the hassle with their insurance companies. All because some [removed] had to drive while tweeking. And of course his injuries are minor. The whole thing makes me sick.

    • justbeingreal
      June 18, 2013 at 4:26 pm

      AMEN !!!!!!

    • Mr. Mister
      June 18, 2013 at 4:37 pm

      Yeah, this is downright disgusting.

    • dumbandblind
      June 18, 2013 at 6:24 pm
      • Palmdale_Steve
        June 18, 2013 at 8:03 pm

        Wow..quoting a “Mac Rumors” comment section as a point of informed discussion on military matters, how special.

        Real Pravda there comrade.

        • Adam Chant
          June 19, 2013 at 10:20 am

          And from 10 years ago too.. and to a link that no longer works.. way to follow the fact trail to the truth..

          Though.. it is in fact true that under certain instances drugs are used to increase the performance of military personnel the use of a reference that leads to a bad URL is extremely problematic and systemic of how rumor and hearsay are often passed off as facts on the Internets.

          When I originally heard about this I assumed that it was drugs and psychological issues that compelled this person to drive the wrong way on the freeway.. I just wonder if it was in fact bath salts that were purchased illegally at a local smoke shop that caused this and not just your run of the mill meth?

          “which brings me to my next point. Don’t smoke crack” -WaterBoy

Comments are closed.