Rollover accident seriously injures 71-year-old driver - Tucson News Now

Rollover accident seriously injures 71-year-old driver

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(Source: Northwest Fire) (Source: Northwest Fire)
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

A 71-year-old Sierra Vista man was seriously injured Saturday night in a rollover accident on Interstate 10 at the Ruthrauff Road underpass.

The man was trapped in his heavily damaged minivan after the incident around 11:30 p.m., Northwest Fire Capt. Adam Goldberg said.

Northwest paramedics and the Arizona Department of Public Safety found the minivan on its side on the bank of the overpass, Goldberg said.

"The initial crew deemed the vehicle unstable and first had to use tow straps and a DPS vehicle to tie off the van to prevent it from sliding down the hill of the overpass," Goldberg said. "Once the vehicle was secure, Northwest Fire paramedics entered the minivan and began treating the driver for his injuries."

Northwest Fire's Technical Rescue Team used specialized stabilization equipment to brace the minivan, Goldberg said, then assisted in removing the windshield frame and cutting the roof of the minivan off to free the driver. 

"Crews also had to use the Jaws of Life to free the victims' legs which were pinned under the dashboard and gas pedal," Goldberg said.

It took nearly an hour to free the driver. who was transported to a local hospital in serious but stable condition, Goldberg said.

The driver was traveling from Phoenix to his home in Sierra Vista.

"The driver was wearing a seatbelt, and this is credited with preventing critical, if not fatal injuries in such a significant crash," Goldberg said.

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