Hakop Maghakyan's Alleged Drinking, Driving and Hitting a Tanker Don't Mix on 134 Freeway. Yet He's Out on $5,000 Bail: VIDEO
This fiery scene on the 134 Freeway brought to you by a drunk driver (allegedly.)
By Andra Lim
You have a little too much, you get in your car, you start up the engine.
It's a stupid idea -- and even stupider if you can't avoid hitting the huge double-rig tanker that's carrying over 6,000 gallons of oil. The tanker fire at I- 5 and the 134 Freeway dominated headlines this weekend, and here's how it went down:
Hakop Maghakyan, 25, of Glendale, has been arrested for allegedly being DUI when he drove into the back of the tanker, overturning the rear trailer, which then burst into flames. Maghakyan and the truck driver ran to the off-ramp and weren't hurt.
But Maghakyan, if convicted, will go down as one of the more despised drunk drivers in recent Los Angeles history -- and that's saying a lot.
Apparently, (if he's guilty), he needs some basic "Don't Drink and Drive" lessons about freeway-dependent, tinder-dry Southern California. Here they are:
Lesson 1: Don't start a massive fire that burns for an hour in freeway gutters and takes 150 firefighters, along with two helicopters, to put it out. Even 10 hours after the incident, wood in a ramp connector bridge was still flaming, according to City News Service.
Lesson 2: Don't cause epic traffic backups -- the entire 134 Freeway was closed over Saturday night, and westbound lanes didn't open up until late on Sunday.
Lesson 3: Don't wreak an estimated $250,000 worth of damage to asphalt, guard rails and bridge rails.
Maghakyan has since been released on $5,000 bail, a cheap price, considering.
Some of the drivers who got stuck crawling by the inferno won't be too happy about that. A few of them managed to shoot some footage -- take a look for yourself:
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