(The Palm Springs Tribune offers free hyper local news to those living in, visiting, or interested in Greater Palm Springs and the Coachella Valley. Subscribe here for the latest stories, and consider making a donation to ensure local quality news is free and available to all, without a paywall.)
Palm Springs, CA
Just before 2:00 AM, on Tuesday May 30th, a PSPD officer observed a traffic collision on N Indian Canyon at the wash, after two vehicles passed him, at a high rate of speed, crashing through the south closure barricades. At the time, the road was closed due to blowing sand and low visibility. The vehicles continued through the wash, with one of the vehicles colliding with a large sand berm, that covered the entire roadway. The vehicle rolled over and became engulfed in flames. The driver, 18 year-old Michael Hernandez, sustained major injuries. He remains hospitalized and is facing DUI charges.
While at the scene, another vehicle was found rolled over, but no occupants were found. It was unknown if this vehicle was abandoned and involved with the current traffic collision, until PSPD became aware that the driver of that vehicle did not report an earlier collision. The investigation revealed the driver, 31 year-old Pablo Garcia Montealegre had been drinking and was driving his juvenile child home from a party, in Cathedral City, when he bypassed the barricades colliding with the same berm, rolling over his car. He self-extricated himself and his son and walked to a nearby gas station, where they were picked up by a family member, and taken to a local hospital. After investigating, the PSPD officer on-scene arrested Montealegre for DUI and child endangerment. The child sustained serious injury to his face and unknown internal injury to his body. The child was airlifted to another hospital for treatment.
If you were a witness to or have any additional information on these collisions, please contact the PSPD Traffic Division, at 760-323-8125. Anonymous information can also be provided to Crime Stoppers at 760-347-7867.