3 suffer burn injuries after hit-and-run driver crashes into Hawaiian Gardens restaurant

Three people suffered burn injuries, two seriously, after the driver of a GMC pickup truck slammed into the kitchen wall of a Mexican restaurant in Hawaiian Gardens, authorities said. 

Emergency crews responded to the 12000 block of E. Carson Street just before 8 p.m. Thursday night after a vehicle plowed into Don Ruben Mexican Grill. 

The driver of the truck lost control driving eastbound on Carson St. at Elaine Avenue. The suspect then crashed the front end of the truck into the kitchen area where three employees, who were cooking at the time of the crash, were left with grease burns after hot oil spilled onto them, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said. 

Two women were taken to a local hospital for treatment. Sheriff’s officials say one of the victims suffered serious burns on half of her body. 

A gas line was also ruptured in the crash, which prompted evacuations to nearby businesses and a response from SoCalGas crews. Street closures were also in place for nearly eight hours. 

Authorities say the driver of the truck fled the scene on foot and has not been located. 

The cause of the crash is under investigation.