Four Cloverdale teens were injured Monday evening and their 16-year-old driver could be cited after she apparently lost control and hit a tree, causing the sedan to catch fire, the CHP said Tuesday.
The injuries ranged from minor to moderate, and the four went in multiple ambulances to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, CHP Officer Jon Sloat said in a news release.
The female driver had been headed south on River Road in east Cloverdale about 6:10 p.m. when the 2015 Chevrolet Malibu crashed head-on into the tree near Angelli Road. Her name wasn’t released as she could face a violation of her provisional license, which dictates new drivers not carry passengers unless an adult 25 or older is in the vehicle, Sloat said.
The car was engulfed in flames when the first ambulance arrived, Cloverdale fire Battalion Chief Rick Blackmon said.
The teens escaped the car on their own. The passengers were identified by the CHP as Salvador Lopez, 15, Jorge Gonzalez, 18, Rebecca Andrade, 17, and Felisa Vega, 15.
One of the teens told firefighters they’d recently gone through the Every 15 Minutes program at Cloverdale High School and all were wearing seat belts, Blackmon said. The program, which rotates through Sonoma County high schools, graphically shows teens the potentially dire consequences of drinking and driving, and the need for safe driving.
Alcohol or drugs don’t appear to be a factor in the crash, Sloat said. The driver’s speed wasn’t known.
You can reach Staff Writer Randi Rossmann at 707‑521-5412 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter@rossmannreport.