SAN BENITO COUNTY, Calif. - A drunk driver is behind bars after driving an SUV off the highway and flipping down into a river bed in San Benito County.
According to the California Highway Patrol, the accident occurred Wednesday morning around 5:55 a.m. on southbound Highway 101, north of Highway 129. The driver, 30-year-old Joseph Johnson of San Ramon man and three passengers were in a 2007 Chevrolet Suburban when Johnson made an unsafe turning movement while on the San Benito River Bridge hitting a concrete guardrail. The Suburban overturned onto the riverbed about 50 feet down from the highway.
CHP said the Suburban caught fire but everyone in the SUV was able to get out. Injuries from the crash ranged from minor to major. Two people were airlifted to San Jose Regional Medical Center.
Caltrans was called to the scene to repair a section of the missing guardrail. One of the lanes was closed for about five hours while crews pulled the car out, and made guardrail repairs.
Investigators determined Johnson was under the influence of alcohol. The San Ramon man was arrested and booked into the San Benito County Jail.