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2 People Critically Injured in Wrong-Way Crash on Highway 217 in Goleta

Collision caused by wrong-way driver who allegedly was drunk, according to CHP

Firefighters rescue injured driver Click to view larger
Two people were critically injured early Friday in a head-on collision allegedly caused by a wrong-way driver on Highway 217 near Goleta (Ryan Cullom / Noozhawk photo)

Two people were critically injured early Friday in a head-on collision allegedly caused by a wrong-way driver on Highway 217 near Goleta, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The accident, involving an alleged drunken driver, occurred at about 1:25 a.m., said CHP Sgt. James Richards.

Grady James Hocking, 21, of Goleta drove his 2018 Mazda northbound in the southbound lanes of Highway 101 before heading west in the eastbound lanes of Highway 217, also known as Ward Memorial Boulevard, Richards said.

He slammed head-on into a 2012 Dodge driven by David Cruz, 53, of Oxnard.

Both drivers, who were alone in their vehicles, suffered major injuries, and were taken by AMR ambulance to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital.

Hocking was listed in critical condition and Cruz was in serious condition, according to a hospital spokesman.

Hocking was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving before being released to the hospital, Richards said.

The eastbound interchange of Highway 217 was closed for about an hour after the crash.

The collision remained under investigation.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Firefighters rescue injured driver Click to view larger
Two people were critically injured early Friday in a head-on collision allegedly caused by a wrong-way driver on Highway 217 near Goleta (Ryan Cullom / Noozhawk photo)

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