Woman drives 18 miles down wrong side of highway

Eric Pfeiffer
January 13, 2012

A woman in Washington State drove 18 miles on the wrong side of the highway going up to 100 miles an hour.

"She didn't even know she was on the freeway and at first she couldn't grasp that had happened," State trooper Guy Gill said.

Police unsuccessfully tried to stop Olympia schoolteacher Pamela Drawsby, 60, by using their sirens, spotlights and even a PA system, according to the Bend Bulletin. A trooper even drove alongside Drawsby's Lincoln LS, attempting to warn her that she was headed for danger.

Police were only able to stop Olympia schoolteacher Pamela Drawsby, 60, by closing down I-5 at the main gate of a joint Army and Air Force base, Lewis-McChord, using spike strips to puncture her tires.

And at first, even the tire spikes were unsuccessful, "because the driver was all over the place, using all the lanes," said Gill.

Amazingly, no one was hurt, despite several "near misses," Gill said.

Before she was stopped Drawsby headed down the southbound lanes of I-5 at 2am, reaching speeds of 100mph. More from the local CBS affiliate:

The 60-year-old Olympia woman drove in the southbound lanes of I-5 around 2 a.m., nearly hitting a truck driver, Rick Ingraham. He knew something was wrong when he saw drivers flashing their lights at him, which caused him to pull out of the fast lane.

"No sooner did I do that, a white little sedan-like vehicle comes flying by me in what would be my outside lane," Ingraham said.

Drawsby bailed herself out of jail the next morning and claimed to not remember anyting from the previous night. Police investigators said it "appeared" she had been drinking and taking prescription medication. Drawsby has since plead "not guilty" to a DUI charge.

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