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Car burns after being struck
Driver who hit car from behind arrested for DUI
A 1963 Ford Galaxy burned on Mitchell Road Sunday after being struck by a drunken driver. - photo by Courtesy of Ceres Police

The owner of a 1963 Ford Galaxy lost his car early Sunday morning after it burst into flames after being slammed by a mini-van driven by a suspected drunken driver.

The collision occurred at 2 a.m. on Mitchell Road just north of Roeding Road, said Lt. Brent Smith of the Ceres Police Department.

The grinding crash was heard by Officer Freddie Ortiz who was on patrol in the area. Ortiz found both the Ford and a silver 2003 Mercury mini-van resting on their sides.

One mini-van had rolled several times and the Ford was on fire. Occupants of both vehicles scrambled to safety with only minor scrapes and bruises, Smith said.

According to the report of the accident, drivers of both vehicles were northbound on Mitchell Road in the same slow lane. Joe Haro, 65, of Mesa, Ariz., was driving the Ford Galaxy when it was struck hard and fast from behind. Smith said that Karin Tumacder, 32, of Modesto, was driving an estimated 100 mph when it hit the Ford in front of it, sending it a wooden utility, severing it and falling on its side as it burst into flames. The mini-van, with its three occupants, rolled over several times. One of the vehicles also took out a city "No Parking" sign. Tumacder and her passengers, George Tapia, 35, and Joshua Rosenburgh, 29, both of Modesto, escaped serious injuries. They were transported to Doctors Medical Center in Modesto for treatment of injuries that ranged from cuts to hands and arms to back pain.

Crews from Turlock Irrigation District were called out to replace the shattered power pole.

Tumacder was determined to be under the influence and was arrested on DUI charges.