'Heroic effort' after crash on I-84 leaves car hanging over bridge at Malad Gorge

Malad Gorge crash ISP
Posted at 6:22 PM, Mar 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-16 09:14:51-04

UPDATE (3/16): Idaho State Police have released more details about the crash and rescue.

Witnesses say a driver lost control of a 2004 F-350 pulling a 30-foot camper, sending it swerving into the right shoulder barrier, then sliding against the left side guardrail. That's when it tipped over the bridge, with the camper blocking the eastbound lanes. Only the safety chain between the truck and camper kept it from falling into the Malad Gorge, 80 to 100 feet below.

An ISP trooper arrived just as the crash was happening and called to the 67-year-old man and 64-year-old woman inside. The pair were wearing their seatbelts and said they were alert and not seriously injured. A semi-truck driver offered up an additional set of chains to help hold the pickup to the camper.

A full team of emergency responders arrived on scene, including a team of specially trained rope rescue paramedics, the Magic Valley Paramedics Special Operations Rescue Team (SORT). SORT members were transported quickly to the incident by Air St Luke's Magic Valley. Once on scene, the SORT members were able to rappel down to the dangling pickup truck and attached a harness to each victim allowing rescuers to raise each to safety.

Two small dogs were also in the pickup. Rescuers were able to get the dogs to safety as well. An ISP Trooper transported the dogs safely to the home of a family member in the Magic Valley.

The Idaho State Police would like to thank all the responding agencies: Gooding County Sheriff's Deputies, Gooding County EMS, Gooding Fire Department, Gooding Rural Fire Department, the Jerome City Fire Department, Air St Luke's, Idaho Fish & Game, Jerome County Sheriff's Office.

ORIGINAL (3/15): Two people are safe after a crash left a pickup hanging over a bridge at Malad Gorge.

Idaho State Police called it a "heroic effort" after local emergency response agencies helped get passengers stuck in a pickup dangling over the bridge at Malad Gorge out safe. Safety chains to a 30-foot camper initially kept the truck from falling into the gorge, according to Idaho State Police.

The passengers were taken to a local hospital with what seem to be non life-threatening injuries, police say.

Eastbound I-84 will stay closed for a while as crews continue to clear the scene and make sure the highway is safe, police say. All lanes were blocked and drivers were rerouted at exit 137 through Buhl.