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Driver of car that ended upside down in a pond had been driving recklessly, police say

The accident that landed a car upside down in a pond, put two people in the hospital and closed the on- and off-ramps to West Valley Highway South to Peasley Canyon and Highway 18 West for hours Thursday afternoon was caused by reckless driving, according to Auburn Police.

Auburn Police Commander Mike Hirman said the car with two men and one woman inside had been traveling recklessly south in the 1300 block of West Valley Highway north when an Auburn officer saw it passing in a no-passing zone. Once the car passed the officer, the officer made a U-turn, and when the suspect saw this, he sped up.

"The officer at first tried to catch up, but quickly decided not to, out of safety [concerns] to the public," Hirman said. "The officer went looking for the suspect vehicle, and after a few minutes found the car in the deep ditch, upside down."

According to Hirman, the two passengers had already left the car on their own, but the driver was still seat-belted in, unconscious and under water. The officer got the man out and performed CPR on him until Medics could get there.

Valley Com dispatched the Valley Regional Fire Authority at 1:44 p.m. Firefighters treated the occupants at the scene, and transported the woman to MultiCare Auburn Medical Center. VRFA water rescue technicians searched the vehicle and found no other occupants. King County Medic One transported the driver to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, where his condition is unknown.

As of Friday afternoon, no names had been released.

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