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Accidents Remind Motorists to Slow Down in Snowy Conditions
Wednesday, November 16, 2022


Police have cited a Mountain Rides bus driver for driving too fast for the conditions after the bus hit a car and crashed into a barrow pit during a snowstorm. The accident occurred at 6:41 a.m. on Highway 75 near Rainbow Bend on Monday, Nov. 7.

The bus driven by Hortencia Aguilar-Venegas of Richfield was traveling northbound on Highway 75 when the driver said she lost control on the snowy road and crossed into the oncoming lane, hitting a1996 Honda Accord driven by David Inman of Shoshone. The bus then crashed into the southbound barrow pit.

Inman was extricated from his vehicle and transported to St. Luke’s Wood River Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries.

The bus driver was pinned. One passenger—Shellie Gallagher of Hailey--was transported to the hospital for minor injuries. Other passengers sought medical treatment privately or were transported by family and friends.

Both the bus and the Honda were towed from the scene with significant damage.

That same day a three-vehicle crash with injuries occurred at 5:58 a.m. on Highway 75 near Alturas Drive.

 Blaine County Sheriff’s Department reported that a Florida man was also cited for driving too fast for the conditions. Brandon E. Franklin was driving northbound in his Toyota Camry when he lost control in the snow and slid head-on into a Honda CRF driven southbound by Christina Wampler of Denver. A third vehicle drove into the barrow pit to avoid the collision.

Wampler and her passenger were transported to St. Luke’s Wood River Medical Center for non-life-threatening injuries and their canine passenger was taken to the vet to await pickup by a family member. While the Toyota and the Honda sustained significant damage, the third vehicle was pulled from the barrow pit with no damages.

Even snowplows are not immune from accidents, it seems. The next day at 3:30 p.m. Blaine County Sheriff’s deputies responded to an accident involving a snowplow that was involved in an accident on the bike path adjacent to Village Way in Sun Valley.

The plow struck a metal cap and pipe on the path, which were not visible because they were covered in snow. The driver—Damon Gottlieb Vergel of Hailey—was transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Motorists are also reminded to look out for elk on the road, in addition to slush--a large elk died after being struck in the middle of the highway just south of East Fork Road about 6:30 Tuesday night.

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