Driver seriously injured after Corvette launches down 100-foot ravine in Gorge

A Corvette is destroyed after it rolled down a 100-foot embankment near Exit 18 on northbound Interstate 15, Mohave County, Ariz., Jan. 25, 2019 | Photo courtesy of Beaver Dam/Littlefield Fire District, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — A 70-year-old Washington City man was seriously injured after his vehicle rolled into a deep ravine off Interstate 15 in the Virgin River Gorge Friday afternoon.

A Corvette can be seen in the distance after it rolled down a 100-foot embankment near Exit 18 on northbound Interstate 15, Mohave County, Ariz., Jan. 25, 2019 | Photo courtesy of Arizona Department of Public Safety, St. George News

At about 5 p.m. MST, troopers and emergency personnel were dispatched to the single-vehicle rollover on northbound Interstate 15 near the Cedar Pocket Exit in Mohave County, Arizona, involving a white Chevrolet Corvette, Arizona Department of Public Safety Sgt. John Bottoms said.

Arriving emergency crews found the overturned vehicle more than 100 feet down a steep ravine. The driver was outside of the car with serious injuries.

Responders from Beaver Dam/Littlefield Fire District arrived with rescue equipment, and once they reached the man, he was loaded onto the equipment and carried up the ravine. An awaiting ambulance then transported the patient to Dixie Regional Medical Center in St. George for evaluation and treatment.

At the time of the crash, the driver was heading north on I-15 when he lost control of the Corvette, causing the car to veer to the right where it continued along the soft shoulder until it launched off the edge of the cliff and rolled multiple times before landing at the bottom of the ravine.

“He vaulted his 1998 Corvette into a canyon adjacent to the highway,” Bottoms said.

The canyon where the vehicle came to rest was very deep, Bottoms said, and the car would likely have remained undiscovered by any passing motorist had it not been for the fact that a driver traveling directly behind car saw the crash unfold.

“If the motorist traveling behind the car had not witnessed the incident, the driver likely would have died long before being discovered,” Bottoms said.

Bottoms added that the driver was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash but did remain inside of the car as it rolled. He was able to climb out once it came to rest.

Excessive speed likely played a major role in the crash, Bottoms said.

It took the tow truck operator more than an hour to recover the car from the canyon before it could be towed away.

This report is based on statements from police or other responders and may not contain the full scope of findings. 

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  • Carpe Diem January 27, 2019 at 12:53 pm

    Nice rims!

  • mshaw January 27, 2019 at 8:23 pm

    He probably was trying to be on dukes of hazzard

  • utahdiablo January 27, 2019 at 9:37 pm

    Speed Limit is 55 through that part ( most parts ) of the gorge…but hey, what the heck right?…slow the hell down people and get the hell off your damn cell phones when driving ( oh, and wear your seat belts too )…bet he won’t do that again huh?

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