A wrong-way driver on I-17 caused a head-on crash near the Sunset Point Rest Area that injured four people and closed the southbound lanes early this morning. The wrong-way driver and three victims in the other car all sustained serious injuries and were transported to Phoenix-area hospitals, according to a statement from the Arizona Department of Public Safety.
DPS received the initial report of a wrong-way vehicle at 2:39 a.m.
“The report described a vehicle traveling northbound within the southbound traffic lanes of I-17,” the DPS statement said. “As troopers responded to the scene, DPS received the report of the crash at 2:50 a.m. Motorists removed four people from both vehicles involved in the head-on crash. When troopers arrived, both vehicles were fully engulfed in flames.”
The interstate was re-opened at about 6:30 a.m., according to ADOT.
The suspect drove a Pontiac sedan and the victims were in a Toyota Rav4, DPS said, adding that impairment has not been ruled out.
ADOT will begin testing a wrong-way-driver detection system early next year on stretches of I-17 in Phoenix.