California

They tried to bypass Southern California traffic. Instead, they got stuck in the sand

FILE -- Vehicles in rush hour traffic approach the Interstate 405 freeway and 10 freeway interchange in Los Angeles on July 10, 2015. An accident on Interstate 10 backed up traffic for miles on Friday, Feb. 16, 2018, leading some motorists to get stuck in the sand trying to escape gridlock.
FILE -- Vehicles in rush hour traffic approach the Interstate 405 freeway and 10 freeway interchange in Los Angeles on July 10, 2015. An accident on Interstate 10 backed up traffic for miles on Friday, Feb. 16, 2018, leading some motorists to get stuck in the sand trying to escape gridlock. Bloomberg

A deadly head-on collision on a Southern California freeway Friday afternoon closed the interstate in both directions and backed up traffic for miles.

A few frustrated commuters on Interstate 10 in Rialto took an off-road approach to escape the standstill. It did not go well.

Aerial video posted to Twitter by NBC Los Angeles shows more than a dozen cars attempting to reach alternate roadways by cutting across a stretch of sand dunes along I-10. Many of them went from stuck in traffic to stuck in sand, as drivers can be seen hand-digging their tires out of the dunes.

Twitter response was completely unsympathetic. “They all deserve it,” one user wrote.

The accident itself involved a westbound cement pumping truck ramming head-on into traffic and bursting into flames. At least five people were killed, the California Highway Patrol reports.

The video of sand-trapped commuters was posted to social media around 5 p.m., more than four hours after the collision.

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