Thursday Mar 18 2010
Blood-alcohol results in on wrong-way driver in double fatal I-80 crash
By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
Auburn’s Christopher Dann and driver of other car, Jessica Faber, died in the Dec. 29 collision near Newcastle
A wrong-way driver in a double-fatal crash Dec. 29 on Interstate 80 had a blood-alcohol of 0.20 percent, the Placer County Coroner has determined. Under state law, a driver is considered criminally impaired and unable to operate a motor vehicle when blood-alcohol levels reach 0.08 percent. The coroner’s test result indicate Dann was 2½ times over the legal alcohol limit when he drove west on eastbound Interstate 80 from Auburn to Newcastle. His drive ended when his car crashed head-on into a car driven by Jessica Ann Faber, 18, of Truckee. The coroner’s report also showed Dann – a California State University, Long Beach student and Placer High graduate – had marijuana in his bloodstream at the time of the early morning crash. Both Faber and Dann died at the scene of the crash, with the Faber vehicle burning after the collision. A passenger in the Faber vehicle – Gregory Wessels, 23, of Fountain Valley – escaped but suffered serious injuries and burns. A third Auburn-area traffic death resulting from a wrong-way drive on Interstate 80 occurred March 11. In that fatal accident, 25-year-old Sandra A. Hauser of Newcastle was reported by the Highway Patrol to have been seen by a witness driving the wrong way on eastbound I-80 near the Auburn Maple Street exit. Hauser reversed her direction but reportedly lost control of her vehicle and her car hit a rock embankment. Hauser died after being thrown from the car, the Highway Patrol reported. The crash occurred the day after her 25th birthday. As with other fatalities, blood toxicology tests will be done by the coroner, with a lengthy waiting period for results.