Saturday, April 20, 2019
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Driver takes leap into Coal Creek after an evening at the bar

No one hurt but alcohol surprisingly involved

By Mark Reaman

A local woman got a wet and wild ride after a Saturday night at the local watering holes this past weekend. A 22-year-old Mt. Crested Butte resident who works in Crested Butte apparently spent some time imbibing Saturday evening before getting in her car to head home. Instead of ending up in Mt. Crested Butte, she ended up in the creek.

The woman finished her bar fun about 11 o’clock Saturday night. According to Crested Butte assistant chief marshal Mike Reily, she got in her car and headed east on Maroon Avenue. “Just past Third Street, she took a left close to the house that sits on the edge of Totem Pole Park,” he explained. “Her 2012 Honda Civic zoomed into the east side of the park near the house and avoided a bench, avoided a picnic table, avoided a planter, shot the gap between some willows and then dropped over the retaining wall into Coal Creek.”

Reily said a couple of people on their bikes witnessed the drama and saw the car starting to float down Coal Creek. They quickly rode to Gothic Avenue to try to intercept the vehicle and saw that the car had floated beneath the Windsor bridge and come to a stop on some gravel in the middle of the creek, about 100 yards from where it dropped into the creek. They found the woman about 40 yards upstream of where the car had settled.

“She was already on the shore so she must have self-extricated from the vehicle and swam to the bank,” Reily said.

Emergency medical technicians looked her over and found no major injuries. Marshals saw apparent signs of intoxication and determined she might be drunk. After testing, it was determined she probably was. She was arrested for DUI and careless driving.

The car was towed out of the creek on Sunday morning. The driver made bond and was released around the same time.

Reily said there were no apparent leaks of oil or gas into the creek. After having a wild Saturday night experience, the 22-year-old will now experience the county’s legal system.

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