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3 Injured in Head-On Collision at Controversial Highway Spot

Times Staff Writer

The car of a suspected drunk driver collided head-on with another vehicle on the treacherous Big Bend curve of Laguna Canyon Road on Saturday, injuring the three occupants of both cars and prompting a partial shutdown of the highway.

The accident was reported at 4:24 p.m. and occurred on the westbound side of the two-lane highway. Laguna Beach police closed down that side of the highway--rerouting traffic at El Toro Road--until the accident investigation was completed an hour later.

None of the victims were seriously injured. Patricia Marie Paulding, 41, of El Toro, whose late-model car police say caused the accident, was listed in good condition at Mission Hospital Regional Medical Center in Mission Viejo, where she was treated for a concussion. She was arrested for suspected drunk driving but released at the hospital under her own recognizance, police said.

The driver of the other vehicle, Harout Beberyan, 38, of Los Angeles, was also listed in good condition at Mission Hospital, where he was treated for a fractured pelvis. His passenger, Bursalian Buzand, 23, of Los Angeles, was treated and released from South Coast Medical Center.

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