Two Wrong Way Drunk Drivers Crash on I-5 in South Portland (Photo)

February 04, 2023 16:09


Two drunk drivers are facing charges after driving the wrong way on Interstate-5 freeway in South Portland this morning.

On Saturday, February 4, 2023 at 1:07a.m., Central Precinct Officers responded to a report of someone driving southbound in the northbound lanes of I-5. As officers responded, the car crashed into another vehicle just north of the South Corbett Avenue exit. When officers arrived, they found three severely damaged vehicles. They assessed for injuries and Portland Fire & Rescue and AMR paramedics arrived to provide care. None of the patients was transported by ambulance.

Officers' investigation determined that a grey 2021 Nissan Kicks driven by Margot J. Wolfsehr, 38, of Portland, was driving southbound in the northbound lanes when she nearly crashed head-on into a white Ford Explorer with a family of 5, including 3 kids, inside. The crash happened in a curve in the freeway, but despite little warning the Ford Explorer driver was able to make an abrupt avoidance maneuver. The Nissan sideswiped the Explorer, causing them to spin to a stop and scattering debris across the freeway. The driver of another vehicle, a northbound Nissan Sentra, was unable to avoid the debris and his car was disabled after he struck a large piece of sheared-off wheel assembly.

As officers were investigating and arranging for tows, at 2:08a.m., they saw a red 2014 Toyota Prius also driving southbound in the northbound lanes. They immediately radioed for assistance, but the Prius struck a white Ford Fusion nearly head-on just south of South Corbett Avenue. The crash caused serious injuries to the driver of the Ford Fusion, including a broken leg. The adult male driver was transported to the hospital by ambulance. His injuries are not life threatening.

Officers determined that the driver of the Toyota Prius was Emely Mendoza, 23, of Salem. She was evaluated by medics but declined to be transported to the hospital.

Wolfsehr was criminally cited for DUII-alcohol, Reckless Driving, and Reckless Endangerment.

Mendoza was criminally cited for DUII-alcohol, Assault in the Third Degree, Reckless Driving, and Reckless Endangerment.

These crashes could have resulted in death and were a direct result of impaired driving. Please drive sober. If you are planning to drink or use drugs, plan ahead how you're going to get home.

Photo descriptions:
1) Crashed grey Nissan Kicks SUV with rear end propped up on jersey barrier, PPB vehicles in background with emergency lights flashing red and blue
2) View of Nissan Kicks, heavily damaged front left side, wheel assembly torn off, airbags deployed
3) Wider view of the damaged Nissan Kicks
4) Wide view of white Ford Explorer with severe damage on the left side and rear quarterpanel, wheel assembly torn off
5) Red Toyota Prius with severe damage to front left quarter panel
6) White Ford Fusion with severe damage to left front quarter panel, sheared off wheel assembly visible in the foreground



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