The 101 closed in Gaviota Wednesday afternoon while a three-car collision was cleared.
Santa Barbara County Fire Department/David Zaniboni

The southbound 101 was reported closed at El Capitan State Beach Wednesday afternoon due to a major accident involved three vehicles. A wrong-way driver had headed north in the southbound lane at around 2:20 p.m., Captain David Zaniboni of Santa Barbara County Fire reported. The woman driving hit a 30-foot trailer being towed by a truck, then went on to run head-on into another car.

The wrong-way driver and a 60-year-old female passenger in the car she struck were taken to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital with major injuries. The driver in the car was uninjured, and the people in the truck were also uninjured.

California Highway Patrol is investigating the incident. The road appears open on traffic maps, though Caltrans issued a warning the road would be closed at Refugio and traffic re-routed until the vehicles could be moved.


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