COARSEGOLD – Another mountain area resident has lost their life due to a driver suspected of being under the influence of alcohol.
At about 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 27, a Mercury Grand Marquis GS was southbound on Highway 41 just south of Serpa Canyon, and reportedly drifted into the northbound lane.
The driver of a northbound Chevy pickup saw the car coming toward him, and veered into the oncoming lane in an attempt to avoid a collision. The two vehicles hit head-on in the middle of the road, and the pickup rolled over, coming to rest on the driver’s side.
Madera County Engines 12 and 17 responded, along with Cal Fire Engine 4285, Battalion 4215, and CHP. Sierra Ambulance personnel attended to the driver of the Mercury, while firefighters used the Jaws of Life to remove the man and his wife from the pickup. The woman, who was a passenger in the truck, succumbed to her injuries and was pronounced deceased at the scene. Her husband was transported to Community Regional Medical Center (CRMC).
The driver of the Mercury was given a preliminary test for intoxication, and was also transported to CRMC where he was arrested for DUI, according to CHP.
The highway was closed in both directions for over two hours. The names of the parties involved are not being released at this time.