A vehicle carrying three people went off a bridge north of Chester during the rains Sunday night.
At about 8 p.m. Saturday, a vehicle holding two men and a woman drove off a bridge near the 36-mile marker of Interstate 49 just north of Chester, said Crawford County Emergency Management Director Dennis Gilstrap.
Crawford County Rural Fire Department districts 3 and 8 responded, along with Crawford County Search and Rescue, Gilstrap said.
After going over the bridge, the vehicle had fallen 80-90 feet straight down onto a bank near a stream, Gilstrap said.
Rescue crews extricated the three people from the vehicle and used a stokes rescue basket to get them back up the steep embankment under the bridge, Gilstrap said.
"We set up a low-angle haul system with ropes to get them back up," Gilstrap said
It was raining hard at the time of the accident, which most likely contributed to the driver going off the bridge, Gilstrap said. It also is possible the vehicle struck another car before going over, he said.
"When you looked down at that car, you didn’t expect [the occupants] to be in great shape," Gilstrap said. "It was straight down."
Fortunately, Gilstrap did not think they suffered any serious injuries, though all three occupants were taken to Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville for treatment, he said.
"I didn’t see any life-threatening injuries. But they were banged up, of course," Gilstrap said.