PINOLE — A wrong-way driver caused a head-on crash on an East Bay freeway early Friday that killed a Vallejo man, the California Highway Patrol said.
The CHP suspects a 78-year-old Concord woman, who they said had been reported missing, drove a silver Toyota Camry west in the eastbound lanes of Interstate 80 and smashed into silver Ford Focus just west of the Pinole Valley Road exit. The first reports that the Toyota was headed the wrong way came around 12:30 a.m. when it was near the Carquinez Bridge, about 10 miles away from the exit, the CHP said.
The crash left the driver of the Ford trapped in the driver’s seat, and firefighters had to cut him free with hydraulic tools. The 46-year-old died later died at John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek.
Authorities did not identify him immediately, pending notification of his next of kin.
An ambulance also took the woman suspected of driving the Camry to the same hospital. Her injuries were deemed moderate by the CHP, and she was expected to survive.
The CHP said it has not made an arrest in the case, and that it was not immediately clear whether the driver of the Camry was impaired.
A 39-year-old Vallejo woman who was a passenger in the Ford survived with minor injuries, the CHP said.
The CHP is investigating the crash and urged anyone who saw the incident or the Camry going the wrong way to contact its Walnut Creek office at (925) 646-4980.