A wrong-way driver who got part-way over the Golden Gate Bridge heading into opposing traffic was arrested for suspected drunken driving early Friday after a situation authorities said could have ended terribly.
Instead, motorists providing information to the CHP helped them locate the woman, Sacramento resident Elnoa Nainoka, before she could harm anyone or cause injury to herself, CHP Officer Andrew Barclay said.
Barclay said other drivers on the bridge observed Nainoka’s silver/grey Toyota sedan leave the vista point parking lot at the north end of the bridge and turn south into the northbound lanes around 2:35 a.m.
Bridge officers already were responding to numerous calls of a wrong-way driver when Nainoka, 36, apparently made a U-turn midway across the span and proceeded to drive northbound in the proper lanes, the CHP said.
But she was driving very erratically, and others in the area continued to relay information about the car, the license plate number, and its location, allowing CHP officers to catch up with her car after she exited northbound Highway 101 onto the Redwood Highway Frontage Road north of Tiburon Boulevard.
Nainoka showed signs of intoxication, authorities said, and investigation resulted in her arrest for suspected drunken driving, driving while unlicensed and driving under the influence of alcohol over the legal limit of 0.08 percent.
The CHP said it will ask prosecutors for an enhancement for driving with a blood-alcohol level higher than 0.15 percent.
Barclay said he was prevented from specifying Nainoka’s blood-alcohol level.
You can reach Staff Writer Mary Callahan at 521-5249 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter @MaryCallahanB.