UPDATED – Suspects fled police before car crash, fire, police say

A car involved in a two-car collision on early Saturday was being chased by police after failing to stop at a traffic checkpoint, police said.

The crash, which left five people injured, including two who were hospitalized, resulted in one of the vehicles bursting into flames.

Police revealed further details of the incident Monday, explaining that officers were conducting a traffic operation on the Esterley Tibbetts Highway, when a white Nissan Primera drove through the checkpoint around 12:10 a.m. without stopping.

When officers followed the vehicle and activated their emergency lights, the driver pulled over, but then took off again once the police officers began to exit their car.

Police followed the car, which was traveling at about 35 mph. Once the driver of the Nissan encountered traffic along West Bay Road, he pulled into the turning lane and accelerated to what police described as “a very fast speed.”

Moments later, outside the Queens Court complex, the Nissan collided into the back of a white Mercedes Benz SUV, which then collided into a CUC pole.

Police said three people were in the Nissan and two in the Mercedes. Members of the public helped police remove the passengers from the Nissan, which had caught fire.

All five were injured and given emergency first aid by police and emergency personnel. Two were admitted to hospital.

The passenger in the Mercedes was released from hospital Monday, while the 21-year-old driver of the Nissan underwent surgery on Saturday and is still in the hospital in stable condition, police said.

The incident is under police investigation.

“It is unlawful not to obey a police signal to stop, whether it be at a police checkpoint, by a police vehicle with the use of emergency lights and siren, or by a police officer in uniform,” said Kurt Walton, Chief Superintendent. “We need everyone to take responsibility for road safety.”