Drug use suspected in 3-vehicle crash that killed a Wyoming woman on Interstate 70 near Silverthorne earlier this month

Ryan Spencer
Summit Daily
Traffic was backed up from Exit 205 to the scenic overlook on eastbound Interstate 70 on Friday, Sept. 8, 2023. Both directions of the interstate were closed due to a fatal three-car crash.
Andrew Maciejewski/Summit Daily News

Drug use is suspected to be involved in a three-vehicle crash that killed a 71-year-old Wyoming woman on Interstate 70 near Silverthorne on Sept. 8, according to Colorado State Patrol.

The crash occurred just before 6:30 p.m., when a GMC Acadia driving eastbound near mile marker 205, just past the Silverthorne on-ramp, made an abrupt left turn in front of a Jeep Gladiator, public information officer trooper Gabriel Moltrer said.

The Jeep, driven by a 67-year-old Arvada man, collided with the driver-side door of the Acadia, causing the vehicle to rotate counter clockwise into the leftmost lane, Moltrer said. A Ford Explorer, driven by a 58-year-old Thorton man, attempted to avoid the Gladiator, which it had been traveling behind, and its driver-side door collided with the rear of the Acadia, he said. The Acadia and Gladiator came to a rest in the center lane while the Explorer was able to drive to an area off the right side of the road, Moltrer said.

The driver of the Acadia, who hadn’t been wearing a seatbelt, was declared dead at the scene, he said. The drivers of the other two vehicles were reportedly uninjured and had been wearing a seatbelt.

The Summit County Coroner’s Office has identified the driver of the Acadia as Sandra Evans of Baggs, Wyoming.

Interstate 70 eastbound was subsequently closed at the Eisenhower-Johnson Memorial Tunnels around 7 p.m., and traffic was detoured over Colorado Highway 9 at Loveland Pass, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation.

One lane of the highway near the 205 on-ramp from Silverthorne reopened around 9 p.m., but the remaining two lanes of eastbound travel were not reopened until just before 10 p.m., Moltrer said.

Excessive speeds are not suspected in the crash, Moltrer added. He said he did not have information about which of the drivers involved in the crash are suspected of being impaired by drugs or whether charges or a citation were issued.

Summit Daily News has filed a records request seeking Colorado State Patrol’s crash report from the incident.

“With fatal crashes, investigations could be (weeks) or months before the investigation is concluded,” Moltrer said in an email.

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