Two arrested on suspicion of DUI after fatal Highway 1 crash

The crash occurred about 11:30 p.m. north of Valley Ford Road|

The drivers of two cars involved in a fatal three-car crash Saturday night on Highway 1 near Valley Ford were arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence.

The California Highway Patrol on Monday continued to investigate the crash, including whether the third driver, who died, also was under the influence.

The crash occurred about 11:30 p.m. north of Valley Ford Road, according to the CHP. A Nissan Frontier and a Dodge truck collided in a head-on collision.

The two cars were blocking the roadway when Winter Nason, 25, of Santa Rosa, failed to stop his Ford Ranger and collided into the side of the Dodge before crashing into the rear of the Nissan. The Nissan became engulfed in flames, but the CHP is investigating whether the fire started after the head-on collision or after the Ford Ranger’s crash.

The male driver of the Nissan, who authorities have yet to identify, died. A male passenger in the same vehicle escaped, according to the CHP.

Bodega Bay resident Joseph Mantua, 47, who was driving the Dodge, was transported to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital with major injuries but officials said they were not life-threatening. The passenger of the Nissan also was hospitalized, according to CHP.

Mantua and Nason, who was driving the Ranger, were arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence.

Investigators found the unidentified passenger of the Nissan also was under the influence, CHP Officer David deRutte said Monday. That and the circumstances of the crash have led CHP to investigate the sobriety of the unidentified deceased Nissan driver. Investigators await the results of a coroner’s toxicology report, deRutte said.

Anyone who witnessed the multiple-car crash or events leading up to it is asked to call the Santa Rosa CHP at 707-588-1400.

You can reach Staff Writer Andrew Graham at 707-526-8667 or On Twitter @AndrewGraham88

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