A head-on car crash in Wellesley early Friday morning sent eight Babson College students to the hospital, including one woman who was airlifted to Massachusetts General Hospital with serious head injuries, police and college officials said.
“I think people are surprised,” said Michael Chmura, director of public relations at Babson. “It happened in the middle of the night. It’s a small campus, so everybody knows everybody. If that many people are injured, you’re sure to know one of them or have one of them in your class.”
The crash occurred about 2:41 a.m. on Wellesley Avenue near Hunnewell Street, when a Mercedes Benz carrying seven people drifted across the yellow line and collided head-on with a Honda with only one occupant, said Sergeant Scott Whittemore of the Wellesley Police Department.
Chmura said that everyone involved in the accident is a student at Babson. Six had been released from the hospital by Friday afternoon and were back on campus, he said.
About 3,500 undergraduate and graduate students attend the institution, he said.
Glavin Chapel at Babson College was open throughout the day with staff available, and counseling support will be provided for students who need it. It had not yet been decided what steps to take on Monday when classes resume, Chmura said.
The cause of the accident was still under investigation, said Whittemore, but it did not appear that alcohol was involved. No charges had been filed by Friday afternoon.
“We believe the accident occurred because the driver [of the Mercedes] was on the wrong side of the road,” said Whittemore. That stretch of road, he said, is windy and hilly, and the Mercedes appears to have come around a blind curve and collided with the Honda.
The Mercedes was carrying seven people, though it was only made to carry five, said Whittemore.
There were five passengers in the back seat, none of whom was wearing a seat belt, he said.
The woman who was airlifted to Mass. General was riding in the back seat of the Mercedes, said Whittemore. She remained in the intensive care unit in stable condition.
One other back-seat passenger and the drivers of both cars were taken to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center with minor injuries, he said.
The other passengers from the Mercedes went back to the campus and then, by their own means, to Newton-Wellesley Hospital for evaluation.
Accident reconstruction will probably take about a week, said Whittemore, and police will consider filing charges after it is complete.
Police were not releasing the names of those involved in the accident, because they were still working to contact families, he said.
At Babson, student groups were beginning to come together, said Chmura. “People are doing it quietly in their own way.”Evan Allen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. John R. Ellement can be reached at email@example.com.