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California officials seek driver of car that caused crash, killing 5

By Rick Martin, CNN
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5 killed after 12 motorcycles crash
  • NEW: Police detain driver of one car on suspicion of drunk driving
  • The driver is not charged in the deaths
  • The bikers were taking a casual ride to mark their 10th anniversary
  • Four bikers and a passenger in the car die
  • California

See CNN affiliate KTLA for more on this story.

(CNN) -- California authorities were still looking early Monday for the driver of a car who fled the scene after causing a wreck that left five people dead.

The victims comprised of four motorcyclists and a passenger in another car.

The crash took place on a two-lane highway in El Centro, Imperial County, just east of San Diego, on Saturday.

A gold Honda Civic tried to pass a group of 12 motorcycles and crossed into the oncoming lane to do so, the California Highway Patrol said.

The Honda passed the motorcycles, but a Dodge Avenger swerving to avoid hitting the Honda struck the motorcycles head-on, said Deeann Goudie, a spokeswoman for the highway patrol.

Four motorcyclists and a passenger in the Dodge died at the scene. Five of the six people injured were in serious condition, Goudie said.

"The gold Honda Civic left the scene without stopping and police want to talk with that driver," Goudie said. "We're looking for a 1995-2000 model year Gold Honda Civic."

The bikers are part of the Saddle Tramps Motorcycle group in Lakeside, California. They were taking a casual ride on their Harley Davidsons to celebrate the group's 10th anniversary.

On Sunday, CNN affiliate KTLA reported that authorities have detained the Dodge driver on suspicion of driving drunk. But, officials said, they are not holding him responsible for the wreck.