The two sisters—ages 9 and 4—snuck out of their house with the keys to their family’s Chevrolet Malibu on Wednesday morning. With her younger sister in the passenger seat, the 9-year-old drove 10 miles away from their home in West Jordan, Utah to West Valley City using a route that required them to drive on the state’s Route 201 expressway.
Their joyride caught the attention of a semi-truck driver who contacted the police thinking the person behind the Chevy Malibu’s wheel was impaired. He continued to trail the Malibu until it sideswiped another car and collided with his truck. To his surprise, he found the two children in the car’s front seats. Fortunately, no one was harmed during the collision and both girls were wearing seatbelts when the airbags deployed.
“They talked about going to California to swim with dolphins and go to the beach and they woke up at 3 in the morning,” Detective Scott List of West Jordan police said. “The parents were horrified and very shocked to find their kids were gone.”
The sisters’ parents told authorities that they had previously mentioned a possible trip to California, which might have motivated the children to try to drive there. For now, the family has declined to talk about the incident publicly.