A driver spotted holding a meth pipe in his hand led Lake County CHP officers on a brief, fast chase before he crashed into a power pole, sheering it off and knocking down power lines.

The man ran from the Highway 29 crash near Kelseyville Sunday evening and remained at large Monday, said the CHP.

The officers were working a major injury crash on the rural highway at about 5:50 p.m. when the driver slowly passed.

The crash involved an SUV that ran off of Highway 29 and overturned, injuring a woman and two children, all of whom were flown to hospitals, according to the CHP.

Officers working the crash had reduced passing traffic to one lane.

The pipe-holding driver was in a grey, 1995 Mitsubishi SUV, said the CHP. Officers waved and yelled at him to stop.

He kept driving, going north at about 60 mph. Near Cole Creek Road he sped up to about 85 mph with CHP officers behind him, according to reports.

The driver headed onto Cruickshank Road then Live Oak Drive, but lost control and hit the pole.

Power lines fell to the ground. The man ran and disappeared into a nearby mobile home park.

Officers and a police dog searched, but he escaped.

The intersection was closed for most of the night as PG&E and AT&T crews responded to fix the problems, said the CHP.

The initial crash occurred at 4:40 p.m., north of Highway 175 in Cobb.

Driver Tabitha Martinez, 31, of Clearlake was headed north in a Ford Excursion with two children in her car, ages 7 and 8, reported the CHP.

Her SUV moved onto the shoulder, she overcorrected and lost control.

The vehicle spun across the highway and off of the west edge, down a steep embankment and overturned.

Martinez was flown to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, reportedly with minor injuries.

The children were flown to Oakland Children’s Hospital, although only one reportedly had minor injuries, according to the CHP.

 

 

 

http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20120723/ARTICLES/120729827/1042/opinion?Title=Meth-smoking-driver-runs-from-Lake-County-crash-&tc=ar