5 dead in wrong-way crash on Massachusetts highway

MIDDLEBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) " Five people, including four college students, died early Monday in a fiery crash caused by a woman driving the wrong way on a Massachusetts highway, state police said.

A car traveling south on the northbound side of Interstate 495 in Middleborough, about 35 miles south of Boston, slammed head-on into a vehicle traveling in the correct direction shortly after midnight, investigators said.

The northbound car burst into flames after the crash, killing all four young men in the vehicle.

"There is no indication that time allowed for evasive action by the (northbound) motor vehicle operator, to avoid the vehicle traveling the wrong way," said Maj. Anthony Thomas of the Massachusetts State Police.

Authorities said they would not release the names of those who died until Tuesday out of respect for family members, but said the driver and sole occupant of the wrong-way vehicle was a 31-year-old woman whose last known address was in Fall River.

The driver of the other car was a 20-year-old man from Osterville, and three passengers were a 19-year-old Harwich man, a 19-year-old Hyannis man and an 18-year-old man from West Babylon, New York.

All four were students attending colleges in Massachusetts, police said.

The principal of Barnstable High School on Cape Cod said two of the men were recent graduates of the school.

Investigators said they had not determined why the woman was driving in the wrong direction, or whether speed, alcohol or other factors were involved.

This story has been automatically published from the Associated Press wire which uses US spellings

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