Drivers scramble to grab cash falling from armoured lorry in California

Two arrested and police warn of criminal action against more if the money is not returned

Drivers scrambled to collect cash after bags of money fell out of an armoured vehicle on a Southern California motorway, authorities said.

The incident occurred shortly before 9.15am on Friday on Interstate 5 in Carlsbad as the lorry was heading from San Diego to an office of the Federal Deposit Insurance.

“One of the doors popped open and bags of cash fell out,” said California Highway Patrol Sgt Curtis Martin.

Several bags broke open, spreading money – mainly $1 and $20 bills – all over the lanes and bringing the road to a chaotic halt, Sgt Martin said.

A video posted online showed some people laughing and leaping as they held wads of cash.

Two people were arrested at the scene, and Sgt Martin warned that any others who are found to have taken the money could face criminal charges. He said there was plenty of video taken by bystanders at the scene and that the highway patrol and FBI were investigating.

Anyone who took money was urged to bring it to the highway patrol office in Vista.

Authorities did not immediately say how much money was lost. However, at least a dozen people had returned money they collected to the highway patrol by Friday afternoon, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.

“People are bringing in a lot,” Sgt Martin said. “People got a lot of money.”

The motorway was reopened shortly before 11am.

Updated: November 21st 2021, 11:05 AM