SAN FRANCISCO -- Three people inside a vehicle that led California Highway Patrol officers on a brief pursuit Saturday night died after their vehicle struck a taxi and caught fire in San Francisco's SOMA neighborhood.
At about 9:20 p.m., officers near Fifth and Bryant streets observed a white Chevrolet driving recklessly, according to CHP officials.
The officer began to follow the Chevrolet as it drove on Fifth Street. When the two cars stopped at a red light, the Chevrolet then accelerated at a high rate of speed, running the red light, CHP officials said.
When the officer tried to pull the Chevrolet over, the Chevrolet failed to stop and ran another red light. The officer decided to discontinue the pursuit for safety reasons.
Shortly after, the officer saw the Chevrolet collide with a taxicab several blocks away. The Chevrolet then burst into flames, according to the CHP.
Fire crews arrived on scene.
Inside the Chevrolet, two bodies were found. The body of a third person who was ejected from the Chevrolet was located near the crash site.
All three victims were male, CHP officials said.
The taxi driver sustained mild to moderate injures and was taken to the hospital for further treatment.
"The CHP is committed to thoroughly and professionally investigating this incident. I want to offer my sincere condolences to the involved families of the three young men who have passed away in this traumatic event. This tragedy has deeply affected all of us at the CHP," Commander of the CHP San Francisco Area Office, Captain Christopher Sherry said in a statement.