Driver arrested after wrong-way wreck

July 6, 2012 10:24:09 AM PDT
There's been another suspected case of a driver being under the influence and going the wrong way. Police say one man's actions led to a series of crashes, including one which sent a Houston police officer to the hospital.

Houston police say the driver, Martin Hernandez, 33, was drunk when he drove north in the southbound lanes of the North Freeway near Tidwell. Four drivers, including an HPD officer, wound up crashing their cars to avoid hitting Hernandez.

Now we're learning this isn't the first time Hernandez has been arrested for driving drunk.

Hernandez has been charged with a felony stemming from the accident Friday morning, which caused injuries to the officer involved. He has also be charged with DWI, this being his second DWI offense.

According to investigators, several reports were called in to dispatchers reporting the wrong-way driver. That's when numerous HPD officers set out to locate the vehicle.

As one officer was traveling southbound on Interstate 45 over the Tidwell overpass he had to serve to miss Hernandez, who was headed northbound. That's when the officer slammed into the wall. Within minutes, four other vehicles traveling southbound also wrecked into one another because they didn't see what was ahead as they also came over the hill at Tidwell.

"As he was cresting over the hill, here comes the suspect's vehicle. It's a brown Chevrolet Silverado," said Officer S. Sorge with the Houston Police Department. "He's in lane two, so he has to veer a hard right to avoid a head-on collision. He careens into the wall and damages the car very good."

Hernandez was given a field sobriety test, which he failed. He was arrested and taken to jail, where he was given a mandatory blood test and charged.

As for the office, he received minor injuries to his arms and legs. There were no other reported injuries.

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