A 44-year-old Centralia man was airlifted Tuesday morning (July 9) to Central Washington Hospital in Wenatchee after the Ford Ranger pickup he was driving collided with a deer on Highway 153, south of Twisp.
The truck, driven by Jose Garcia Salguero, collided with a leaping deer around 5:30 a.m. Tuesday while driving northbound, about 4 miles south of Twisp, according to the Washington State Patrol. Salguero swerved into the southbound lane, but could not avoid the deer, the report said. The deer missed the truck’s grille and entered the truck through the windshield, exiting through the back of the passenger cab and landing in the truck’s bed, Washington State Patrol Trooper Jeff Anderson said.
Salguero suffered a serious head injury and was being treated at Central Washington Hospital. Two adult passengers — Juan Ruiz Hernandez, 30, of Aberdeen, and Manual de la Vega Espejel, 48, of Aberdeen — suffered lacerations but were not seriously hurt, Anderson said. Aero Methow Rescue Service transported the passengers to Three Rivers Hospital in Brewster for treatment, according to Okanogan County Fire District 6.
The State Patrol report said that no drugs or alcohol were involved. Salguero and the passengers were wearing seat belts, according to the report.
As a warning to drivers, Anderson noted that deer this time of year are more active near dawn and dusk; they tend to bed down during the heat of the day.