A woman passenger who hopped out of a car and ran alongside the carpool lane on Interstate 5 was struck and killed around 9 a.m. Wednesday, officials said.
The 52-year-old Huntington Beach woman had been riding in a northbound vehicle near Crown Valley Parkway, CHP Officer Chris Goodwin said. She left the car as traffic slowed and ran to the center divider.
After climbing over the median, the woman ran alongside the carpool lane in the opposite direction, Goodwin said. She was running on the center shoulder, a space about 6 feet wide that divides the carpool lane from the median, he said.
As she sprinted north, "she ran out into the carpool lane in front of a Honda Pilot" and was struck head-on, the officer said.
She later died at Mission Hospital.
The incident is being investigated as a possible suicide, Goodwin said.
The three left lanes on the south 5, including the carpool lane, were shut down for about an hour, Goodwin said.
The driver of the vehicle pulled off the freeway and was soon after contacted by CHP, he said.
The Orange County Coroner's Office would not release the woman's identity pending notification of her next of kin.
The CHP is looking for witnesses. Anyone who saw the incident is encouraged to call Officer Eric Barnard at 949-487-4000.