An 81-year-old man was killed early Tuesday morning, and two law enforcement officers were moderately injured, when the man’s car slammed into a police vehicle on Israel’s coastal road (Highway 2).
The man, a resident of the Sharon region near where the accident took place, was driving at high speed against the direction of traffic.
The two officers, a policeman, 20, and a municipal inspector, 46, were evacuated to Hillel Yaffe Medical Center in Hadera. They were racing to intercept the car after drivers alerted police to the dangerous driver.
The reason for the elderly driver’s behavior was not immediately clear. An initial police inquiry revealed that he did not get far. He got on the highway at the Yanai Junction north of Netanya, drove north in the southbound lanes, and had collided with the police car before reaching the next intersection, Olga Junction near Hadera.
His family said Tuesday morning that he had been missing since the previous night.
The collision was powerful enough to throw his vehicle over the concrete divider into the northbound side of the highway, where it landed upside down.
The Ynet news site quoted a Magen David Adom paramedic at the scene, Lior Elmakayas, as saying, “The driver was trapped in the vehicle unconscious, without a pulse and not breathing. His death was determined at the scene.”
The highway, a major thoroughfare between Haifa and Tel Aviv, was briefly closed to traffic, causing long traffic jams.
Police have launched an investigation into the incident.
Video footage posted to social media appeared to show the car driving against traffic and crashing into the police vehicle.