According to the California Highway Patrol, a 52-year-old construction worker was hospitalized after being struck by a car at his work site. The worker was hit by the car around 10:40 p.m. on July 20, on the Van Buren Boulevard on-ramp, which leads to the westbound 91 highway.
The vehicle which allegedly struck the worker was a 1998 Mazda Protégé, and the driver was a 21-year-old female. According to the CHP, the driver first sped through the closed on-ramp, proceeded to hit a moving Caterpillar loading machine, and then struck the concrete rail and the worker. The driver immediately tried to flee the scene of the accident but was quickly apprehended by the CHP.
The officer on the scene said it was apparent that the driver was under the influence. She was arrested on suspicion of DUI and causing an injury, along with a felony for hit-and-run. Another passenger, a 19-year-old female, was in the car as well. Both passengers were taken to the hospital for minor injuries. After the driver's release, she was immediately booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside, and her bail was set at $50,000.
The victim of the accident was taken to a local hospital where he remains in critical condition.
The CHP and state transportation officials are seriously concerned by the increasing number of accidents of this type. In the past three months, three construction workers have been killed while working on various highways. The increasing number of accidents not only has officials concerned, but community members as well.
Source: Banning-Beaumont Patch "Crash Left Beaumont Freeway Worker Critically Injured" Guy McCarthy, July 21, 2011