An alleged street racer lost control of his classic Mustang and slammed into an SUV in Monrovia on Saturday afternoon, shearing the Mustang in half and sending both drivers to hospitals with major injuries, authorities said.
The violent collision took place just before 1:10 p.m. in the 1900 block of South Myrtle Avenue, just south of Duarte Road.
“A witness called us and said she saw two cars racing south on Myrtle,” Monrovia Police Department Lt. Daniel Verna said. One of them was a classic Ford Mustang, and the other was described by witnesses as a red vehicle, possibly a Chevrolet Camaro.
Both vehicles were traveling at high speeds when the driver of the Mustang lost control at a curve in the road, according to the lieutenant.
“He was going so fast, he wasn’t able to take that curve, veered into northbound lanes,” he said.
The driver of a northbound SUV saw the Mustang headed toward him and managed to veer, avoiding a head-on collision, but was still struck by the Mustang, police said.
“The Mustang somehow got split in half,” Verna said. The driver was thrown into the roadway.
The rear portion of the Mustang came to rest against a utility pole and burst into flames, causing the high-voltage wires above to fall to the ground, Verna said. A Southern California Edison crew responded to de-energize the wires.
Paramedics took the driver of the Mustang to a hospital with life-threatening injuries, officials said. He was estimated to be in his 30s.
The SUV driver, described only as a man, also suffered major injuries but was expected to survive, Verna said.
He said the driver of the Mustang is expected to face felony street racing and reckless driving charges. His identity was not available Saturday afternoon.
Christopher Borunda said he was walking nearby when he noticed an older-model Ford Mustang and a second sports car driving down the street.
“(They were) just going slow, neck and neck together revving each of their engines, and then they take off, and the’yre easily going pedal to the metal,” he said.
Borunda said just as he thought to himself a crash could occur. “And then, it actually happened.”
“As soon as I saw there was smoke coming out, I called 911,” he said.
Investigators continued looking for witnesses and video footage of the crash, as well as the second vehicle involved in the race, which did not stay at the scene, police said.
Anyone with information was urged to contact Monrovia police at 626-256-8000. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.