Car ends up in wrong lane after single car accident on Highway 191

Graham County Sheriff’s deputies were called Saturday to assist DPS officials with a single car accident on Highway 191 about 20 miles south of Safford. When the report came in, DPS apparently didn’t have an officer available to respond and requested assistance from the Sheriff’s office. A deputy was dispatched to the scene at approximately 1:20 in the morning.

Upon arrival the deputy observed a blue car blocking southbound lanes of traffic. The car was facing east, perpendicular to traffic lanes. Two vehicles had stopped and parked their vehicles on either side of the wrecked car to prevent oncoming traffic from colliding with the vehicle.

The deputy approached the driver side of the car where a man was sitting in the driver seat. According to the police report, the driver was wearing his seatbelt and was slouched forward. The deputy could hear the man mumbling that he was okay. When the deputy asked the man questions his only response was, ‘I’m okay, ‘ or ‘okay’ to every question. The man was not moving but when the deputy touched him he flinched.

The deputy found the man’s wallet on the front passenger side floor board. The driver’s license listed him as a resident of Sierra Vista. The Deputy asked the man what his name was, and the man responded with, “I’m okay.”

The deputy noted that there was no noticeable odor of alcohol and no evidence of drugs in the vehicle.

The vehicle had sustained damage. A tire was flat and the front bumper was missing. The deputy followed the tracks where the car went off the road. From the evidence of the tire tracks it appears that the vehicle was traveling north on highway 191 in the northbound lanes toward Safford. The tire tracks show the vehicle left the highway on the east side and drove through weeds, ran over small mesquite trees and bushes. A rim cover was found in one of the trees and two large pieces of black plastic were laying on the ground next to the tire tracks.

The tracks curved to the left and back onto the northbound lanes of the highway. The vehicle left tire tracks, damaged weeds and several golf ball sized rocks in the roadway as it crossed the lanes of traffic and continued across the median over to the southbound lanes. Investigators found a large piece of blue plastic in the median that matched the color of the car. The vehicle apparently made an abrupt u-turn in the southbound lanes and came to its final resting place facing east in the southbound lanes, blocking both lanes of traffic.

The victim was transported to Mount Graham Regional Medical Center for treatment.