INDIANA, Pa. (KDKA) — State police say one person was killed and two others injured in a suspected DUI crash Friday night in Indiana County.
The accident happened around 8:40 p.m. in the northbound lanes of Route 119 in front of Sanso’s Pizza in Center Township.
According to state police, a pickup truck driver suspected of being under the influence of alcohol was pulling out of the restaurant parking lot, trying to cross the median, and pulled in front and struck an oncoming vehicle nearly head-on.
“I saw over to my right a car that was smashed into the guardrail in the wrong direction,” said Michael Bertig, a witness. “It was facing northbound; although, it was in the southbound lanes.”
The passenger in the second vehicle was killed and her husband, who was driving, was seriously injured.
Bertig, who lives close to the crash scene, went home and got his friend, Dr. William Largen, who is visiting from Charleston, South Carolina. Dr. Largen says the husband and wife were both unconscious, but firefighters pulled the man out first. He says the woman had a weak pulse, but firefighters couldn’t get her out of the door.
“So I said, ‘Why don’t we try to get her out the back.’ So, we put a c-spine collar on her and a back stretcher, and took her out the driver’s side rear door,” said Dr. Largen.
After losing her pulse, Dr. Largen performed CPR all the way to the hospital until she was turned over to the medical staff at Indiana Regional Medical Center.
“At that point it had been about 25 to 30 minutes of CPR and pulse-less activity, and she was declared dead at that time,” said Dr. Largen.
The Indiana County Coroner’s Office identifies the victim as 76-year-old Madeline Ralston of Clymer. She was pronounced dead just after 9:45 p.m.
She died of multiple blunt force trauma, according to the coroner’s office.
Ralston’s 79-year-old husband was flown by medical helicopter to Conemaugh Medical Center in Johnstown. His name has not been released.
The other driver was taken to Indiana Regional Medical Center for minor injuries. His name has not been released, but state police say he’s a 39-year-old man from Indiana, Pennsylvania. State police say a blood sample was taken from him and authorities are waiting for the results from a toxicology test.
An autopsy was to be conducted on Ralston on Saturday.
State police continue to investigate the accident.