A series of three crashes brought traffic to a standstill for several hours on eastbound Interstate 80 in Yolo County on Sunday.
At 5:30 a.m., Ismael Villegas, 22, of Ceres was driving a Ford F-150 east just west of Enterprise Boulevard when he slowed down to keep pace with the traffic in front of him. As he decelerated, he was rear-ended by a Mitsubishi Eclipse driven by Xai Lor, 26, of Sacramento, according to the California Highway Patrol.
Villegas’ vehicle ended up facing the wrong way in the center divider, while Lor’s vehicle stopped in the right lane. Lor suffered an injured ankle, and Villegas had a laceration to his nose.
Two minutes later, a Honda Civic driven by Michael Puentes, 58, of Chicago was unable to slow down in time to avoid hitting Lor’s Mitsubishi Eclipse in the right lane. The Honda ended up on the right shoulder.
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Five minutes after that, a Budget moving truck driven by Mahendra Kuma also apparently was unable to slow down in time to avoid the Mitsubishi, which was still stopped in the right lane. The box truck hit the concrete guardrail on the right shoulder and went over the side of the highway into the Yolo Wildlife Preserve. Kuma sustained a broken leg.
The incidents remain under investigation, and alcohol is not suspected of having been a factor in any of the three crashes.