I-70 driver who veered into river hospitalized
A man remained hospitalized Thursday, two days after his vehicle went off Interstate 70 in New Castle and he had to swim to shore.
Authorities Thursday morning closed an eastbound lane of I-70 for several hours to allow crews to remove the vehicle from the river.
The man’s name hasn’t been released and the accident remains under investigation. New Castle police officer B.T. Harper said it occurred about 4 a.m. Tuesday morning. The road conditions were snowy and icy at the time.
He said the Ford Expedition hit about 90 feet of guardrail before vaulting over the embankment and into the river.
The SUV landed upright and the current pushed it until it came to rest on an underwater boulder, and only partially submerged.
Harper said the man was in Valley View Hospital in Glenwood Springs on Thursday, and was in the intensive care unit as of Wednesday evening. Harper said he didn’t know the nature of the man’s injuries.
He said drugs and alcohol aren’t considered factors in the accident.
Vehicle speed, however, might have been a factor.
Search and rescue crews from Garfield and Summit counties helped with Thursday’s vehicle rescue. Harper said it involved using boats to paddle cables out to the vehicle so tow trucks could winch it back to shore.
No environmental contamination resulted from the accident, he said.