Morning crash injures three people and shuts down part of Highway 154

Two vehicles over the side on San Marcos Pass

SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. - A crash involving a small SUV and a pickup truck shut down the westbound lanes of Highway 154 Thursday morning.

Motorists were advised to drive with caution and use U.S. Highway 101 if possible.

The two vehicles collided in what was nearly a head-on crash.

At about 9:30 a.m. near Stagecoach Road, the male driver in the pickup was traveling eastbound when he experienced a mechanical issue and crossed into the westbound lanes crashing into the SUV, said Santa Barbara County Fire Public Information Officer Mike Eliason.

Both vehicles fell approximately 25-30 feet over the side of the road with debris from the wreckage sprawled along the roadway. The driver in the pickup suffered minor injuries and was taken to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. The two occupants of the SUV, a man and a woman in their 60's, were also taken to Cottage Hospital after firefighters spent about 20 minutes extricating the woman using the Jaws of Life.

The woman in the SUV suffered major injuries, Eliason said. The man in the SUV suffered moderate injuries.

The California Highway Patrol is investigating the incident.

There was a large debris field of car parts including tires, suspension pieces, bumpers and broken glass.

The roadway was partially closed during the cleanup and vehicle retrieval.

Highway 154 was wet at the time from a passing weather system.  It was the first rain in the area in weeks.

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