By Kathleen Sterling
Residents thought it was an earthquake.
At 2 am Saturday morning a speeding car lost control on Vanowen just east of Valley Circle and crashed into a line of parked cars.
The speeding car actually flipped over and landed on top of a small sports car.
Neighbors rushed out only to see the driver running away.
The cars were totaled. The mess had to be cleaned up, insurance companies called, rental cars booked, and new cars purchased. At least no one was killed.
This newspaper has reported too many speed racing deaths in the last year. The only saving grace in this accident was the time of day when fewer cars were on the road.
It’s speculation only from those at the scene that the driver was speeding and probably drunk, because no one understood how they could get out of the accident without injury – and out of the upside-down car.
Officer Freeman of LAPD’s Valley Traffic Division could not comment on the status of the driver – because they have not yet been found.
The Toyota Highlander is registered to an individual in Santa Barbara. “No one has been arrested and no one has identified who the driver is,” Freeman told Valley News Group. He explained that if the driver is found, they will only face a misdemeanor hit and run. “I don’t agree with that charge, because a car is worth more than the cost of a felony crime, but that’s the California law. However, we are still looking for a hit and run suspect.”
Speed racing, takeovers and drunk driving have been in the news more than ever, and just last month a suspected drunk driver speeding down Mulholland killed a father and son.
Councilman Bob Blumenfield, who has pushed to enact tougher laws and more resources, told Valley News Group, “Reckless driving continues to plague our community and it’s simply unacceptable. Our West Valley-specific street racing task force continues to yield results and while this level of enforcement is critical, it won’t end all the stupid, careless driving like we saw recently on Vanowen. Crashes like this are 100% avoidable and I will continue to partner with law enforcement and other city agencies to make our streets safer for everyone.”
During this busy holiday season there is not reason to drink and drive with Uber, Lyft and sober friends available. LAPD urges everyone to watch how fast they are driving – and how fast they are drinking.
Anyone with information about the incident or the missing driver is urged to contact Officer Freeman at (818) 644-8115.