A 21-year-old woman has been charged with driving while impaired after a March 20 crash that set her car on fire and resulted in three people being taken to the hospital for personal injuries.


According to North Carolina State Police, Durham resident Lauren Hodge was westbound on Interstate 40 near Aviation Parkway when the 2007 Toyota Corolla she was driving hit the median at approximately 3:30 a.m. The car ran off the road to the right, hit a large rock, and went airborne for about 30 feet.


Troopers say the vehicle caught on fire and was engulfed in flames when authorities arrived. Hodge and her two passengers were able to escape the blaze.


Hodge, 18-year-old Durham resident Mitchalene Brown, and 18-year-old Georgia resident Ashley Lewis received transport to Rex Hospital. They were released after undergoing treatment.


According to troopers, alcohol and speed were both factors in the collision. Hodge was charged with DWI, careless and reckless driving, and failure to maintain lane control.

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