Minnesota News

Two dead, child seriously injured in wrong-way crash on Interstate 694

Emergency crews at a crash on a freeway
Two people died in a wrong-way crash on Interstate 694 in Oakdale early Thursday. The State Patrol says a car traveling south in the northbound lanes hit an SUV, that in turn collided with a third vehicle.
Minnesota Department of Transportation

Updated: 1:30 p.m.

Two people died and a young child was seriously injured in a wrong-way crash along Interstate 694 in Oakdale, Minn., early Thursday.

The Minnesota State Patrol said the crash happened just before 2:30 a.m. in the northbound lanes at Stillwater Boulevard.

Authorities said a Toyota Corolla traveling south in the northbound lanes hit a Pontiac Vibe head-on, and both drivers died. The Pontiac then collided with a northbound Mercedes-Benz Sprinter van.

The state patrol identified the driver of the Toyota as 28-year-old William Alexander Flores-Zamora of St. Paul, and the driver of the Pontiac as 32-year-old Alexander John Ripka of Rice, Minn.

A 3-year-old girl in the Pontiac — Nevaeh Ripka, also of Rice — suffered life-threatening injuries. The driver of the Sprinter van suffered minor injuries.

The northbound lanes of I-694 in Oakdale were closed for about five hours after the crash, and reopened by 7:30 a.m. Thursday.