A man was hospitalized via medical helicopter Wednesday following a destructive car crash that shut down a busy intersection in Santee.
The crash, which involved a sedan and a truck, happened sometime before 6 a.m. at the intersection of Magnolia and Prospect avenues. Surveillance cameras from a nearby business captured video of the impact, which showed the white Ford F-350 and a silver Ford Focus colliding at the intersection.
A team of firefighters was seen on video pulling the driver out of Ford Focus and onto a stretcher and placed in a medical helicopter to be airlifted to a hospital. Deputies said he suffered severe injuries.
The driver of the Ford F-350 was taken to the hospital with minor injuries.
Residents in the area report that the intersection is often the site of vehicle crashes and that drivers often run red lights. While an NBC 7 crew was at the scene Wednesday, they witnessed another near-crash at the same intersection.
Santee business owner and resident Scott Bergen said he’s witnessed several crashes on this street, but never “one this bad.”
“Sure there are fender-benders. I drive this intersection, prospect twice every single day and I can’t recall an accident like this. I will never forget,” Bergen said.
Shaunda DiBernardo who works at a liquor store near the corner said she frequently witnesses speeders and drivers running red lights. As a victim of a similar accident, it makes her nervous.
“I was T-boned, on life support. So to see this type of behavior all the time in front of me it’s like, ‘Wow.’ It was only a matter of time before something like this happened,” DiBernardo said.
Running a red light is a really big deal. You have the ability to end someone’s life, if not youre own. So yeah, its an emotional thing for sure.”
It was not clear if a driver in this particular crash ran a red light in the crash. The cause of the incident is still under investigation. At this time, deputies said neither drugs nor alcohol are believed to be factors in the crash.
According to CHP records, there have been 10 other crashes at the intersection since February 2020 and six resulted in injuries. None were deadly. During the same time period, there was an additional 15 crashes within a 100-foot span from the intersection, the data reveals.
Santee Mayor John Minto told NBC7 he and his team are currently taking a look at the 911 calls and other data at the intersection. Up until now, Minto says this is the first time he’s heard about it. City will prepare a complete response after they receive all the details from the investigation.