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Woman accused of DUI after wrong-way accident in California

Police in California took a 32-year-old Vacaville woman into custody on Nov. 8 after an accident that they say occurred because the woman had allegedly been using drugs before getting behind the wheel of her vehicle. Police said that at about 8:30 p.m., the woman entered the eastbound side of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge traveling west.

A representative from California Highway Patrol said that CHP received several calls reporting a wrong-way driver on the bridge. The representative said that the woman entered the bridge at the toll plaza and was driving on the shoulder as she approached the bridge tower. The pattern of traffic then apparently forced her to enter oncoming traffic in the eastbound lanes.

The woman's car reportedly struck one car head-on and sideswiped two vehicles traveling in the eastbound lanes. Emergency crews transported the woman and two other individuals to San Francisco General Hospital. The woman and one other person involved in the accident suffered minor injuries. One person suffered a broken leg in the accident.

Police closed all of the eastbound lanes of the bridge for about 15 minutes to grant emergency personnel access to the scene of the accident. All lanes of traffic were reopened by approximately 10:15 p.m.

Certain drugs may remain in the body long after a person has used them. In addition, some symptoms of drug use such as poor balance are also common after a person has been in a traumatic car accident. A DUI defense attorney may argue that the ambiguity of drug tests and the subjective nature of field sobriety tests make them both insufficient to conclusively prove that their client was driving under the influence of drugs. If the evidence is otherwise compelling, a plea bargain may be considered.

Source: The Reporter, "Vaca woman arrested after wrong-way crash on Bay Bridge", Nov. 10, 2014

Source: CBS Sacramento, "Vacaville Woman Arrested For DUI After Bay Bridge Crash", November 09, 2014

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