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3 Uber riders killed, driver and fourth passenger hospitalized after South L.A. car crash

Three people were killed and three others hospitalized Saturday after a vehicle slammed into an Uber vehicle full of passengers in South Los Angeles.

California Highway Patrol responded to a report about 5:25 a.m. of a collision at the intersection of South Vermont Avenue and West Century Boulevard in Westmont in an unincorporated area of Los Angeles County, authorities said.

According to local media reports, a northbound white Mercedes sedan entered the intersection at a noticeably high speed when it crashed head-on into a black Honda operating as an Uber rideshare.

The force of the collision sent the Honda spinning, ejecting one female passenger, who died at the scene, KTLA reported.

Two other female passengers extracted from the wreckage of the Honda were also pronounced dead at the scene, according to the station. A fourth female passenger and the Honda’s male driver were taken to a hospital, as was the driver of the Mercedes.

A witness told KTLA that the Honda appeared to be waiting to turn left when the Mercedes approached.

That car was “probably going more than 80, 85,” Victor Gonzalez said. “He was probably trying to beat the light but didn’t see the [other] driver, and that’s when the collision happened.”

Once the car stopped spinning, Gonzalez ran to the vehicle, where he found the passengers unresponsive.

“I was trying to help the two girls in the back,” he said. “I started shaking them, I started talking to them, waking them up. They weren’t responding. They weren’t breathing.”

In a statement, an Uber spokesperson said: “We are heartbroken, and our thoughts are with the families of those involved in this devastating crash. We hope the driver and rider who survived recover swiftly.”

The Los Angeles Police Department has taken over the investigation, which is continuing. West Century Boulevard remained closed between South Normandie Avenue and South Hoover Street on Saturday morning as officers surveyed the scene.

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This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.