Suspected drunken driver sends five to local hospital

A Colorado State Trooper investigates a rollover accident of a Dodge Durango in which two people were ejected, seven people were taken to the hospital

A suspected drunken driver who rolled his vehicle Saturday about a mile west of Loma may have been avoiding a DUI checkpoint.

Seven people, including three children ages 1 to 3, were riding in a white Dodge sport utility vehicle when it rolled on a slight corner on U.S. Highway 6 about 3 p.m.

At that time, deputies with the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department were setting up a DUI checkpoint in Loma on Colorado Highway 139.

Sgt. Jeff Lytle of the Colorado State Patrol said the two families from Grand Junction in the vehicle were headed toward Highline Lake State Park when the crash occurred.

However, the most direct route to the park from Grand Junction is on Highway 139.

“Makes you wonder,” Lytle said.

Three adults and two children were taken by ambulance to a hospital after being thrown from the vehicle, Lytle said.

The children were strapped into safety seats, but those seats were not properly secured into the vehicles.

Injuries did not appear life-threatening, he said.

Three other DUI-related crashes were reported across Mesa County in the 3 p.m. hour Saturday, said spokeswoman Heather Benjamin of the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department.


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