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Off-road vehicle rolls north of Silverton, sending six to hospital

Child suffers serious injuries, flown to Mercy Regional Medical Center
An off-highway vehicle went 100 yards off a mountain road Wednesday north of Silverton, requiring one child with serious injuries to be taken by helicopter to Mercy Regional Medical Center.

An off-highway vehicle that rolled 100 yards down a steep embankment Wednesday north of Silverton resulted in one child having to be taken by helicopter to Mercy Regional Medical Center.

DeAnne Gallegos, spokeswoman for San Juan County Search & Rescue, said the OHV went off the road about 4:15 p.m. at the intersection of County Road 2 and County Road 9, just south of Animas Forks.

Six people were in the vehicle: two adults and four children. The family was from Texas, Gallegos said.

One child with serious injuries required a Flight For Life helicopter to be called, which landed and picked up the child at Eureka, an old mine site about 8 miles north of Silverton.

The rest of the family, Gallegos said, was taken by ambulance to Mercy.

Gallegos said all of the children were wearing safety gear, including helmets and seat belts, at the time of the crash.

“They would not have survived that accident (without safety gear),” Gallegos said. “And it goes to show: You can take all the precautions in the world ... you just never know what’s going to happen out there. Those roads are not laymen trails; they are moderate to extremely difficult.”

Gallegos said the status of the family’s injuries was unknown Thursday morning.

The incident was a multi-agency response, including Silverton Ambulance, San Juan County Search & Rescue, the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office, San Juan County Fire Department, Durango Fire Protection District and Flight For Life.


A previous version of this story said the vehicle went 100 feet off the road. Incorrect information was given to The Durango Herald.

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