SAN RAFAEL, Calif. (KTVU) - A mother and her two young children were hospitalized after sustaining serious injuries in a crash in San Rafael Wednesday morning.
Authorities say it happened on northbound Highway 101 near the Saint Vincent exit around 8:30 a.m.
When officers arrived they found an SUV down a steep embankment and located three victims, two children ages 3 and 6 and a woman who had all been ejected from the vehicle.
The children were taken to UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital in Oakland with major injuries.
Their mother who was behind the wheel was airlifted to John Muir Trauma Center in Walnut Creek.
California Highway Patrol's investigation into the wreck stretched into the late morning.
Officer Andrew Barclay with CHP-Marin said, "We still have to go into the vehicle and make sure there wasn't anyone else that was trapped inside or ejected."
Officials later confirmed that there were no other victims, but say a second vehicle was involved.
The SUV that overturned on the hillside burst into flames, making the rescue much more dangerous.
"It is completely burned out. We're very fortunate that we were able to get what we believe to be all of the occupants out of the vehicle prior that fire fully engulfing it," Barclay said.
Investigators really want to speak with at least three good Samaritans who helped pull the victims to safety.
"Right now we're trying to figure out whether they were ejected or what happened," Barclay says. "We're getting some conflicting statements as to whether there people that actually pulled them out of this burning vehicle."
Officers say the driver of the other vehicle was not hurt and is cooperating with the investigation as they work to determine the exact cause of the crash.