Dashcam video shows three-car crash as freeway drivers brake for SpaceX rocket launch

The launch of the latest SpaceX rocket Friday night wasn’t just a hit on social media – it appeared to create at least a couple of actual hits between vehicles on Southern California’s freeways, according to a video posted to YouTube.

In a video posted hours after SpaceX’s Falcon 9 launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base at 5:27 p.m., a three-car crash is seen on another driver’s dashboard camera.

The vehicles are westbound on the 10 Freeway in Banning when the rocket’s plume begins to cut through the darkening sky. The driver in the vehicle with the camera and his children can be heard talking about the rocket in amazement while he slows for the wall of brake lights forming in front of them as other drivers take notice.

Moments after they drive under the South San Gorgonio Avenue overpass, a thud is heard and then a white four-door vehicle in the next lane is shoved into the car in front of it by a van that rear-ended it.

The white vehicle skids out of its lane and the car that it collided with is spun out onto the shoulder. The van also skids to a stop but remains in the far left lane.

The vehicle that recorded the crash managed to escape without being hit. But the video posted onto multiple accounts on YouTube has generated hundreds of thousands of views.

joseph.serna@latimes.com

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