Basalt man recovering after crash |

Basalt man recovering after crash

Aspen Times Staff Report

A 39-year-old Basalt man sustained a ruptured aorta in a two-car accident Tuesday evening on Highway 82 in Snowmass Canyon, according to authorities.

Reyes Juarez-Carrillo was listed in “good condition” yesterday afternoon at St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction, following emergency heart surgery late Tuesday and early Wednesday, authorities said. The aorta is the main artery to the heart.

Juarez-Carrillo, a passenger in a Honda Civic driven by Juan D. Ramos, 22, of Rifle, was injured when the Civic apparently rammed into an Audi that was stopped in downvalley rush-hour traffic near mile marker 28 at about 5:45 p.m., according to the Colorado State Patrol.

Ramos and the driver of the Audi, Noah Rappaport, 36, of Aspen were not injured. A second passenger in Ramos’ car suffered a minor injury.

“Ramos stated that he let his attention drift for a moment only to realize the traffic ahead of him had come to a complete stop,” the patrol reported.

The collision rammed the Audi off to the right side of the road and down a steep embankment, while the Civic crossed the upvalley lane and came to rest nosed against the embankment at the edge of the highway.

Javier Delacruz, 22, of Carbondale, riding in the Civic, required medical attention. He suffered a six-inch cut to his head and was treated and released from Aspen Valley Hospital, according to the patrol.

Aspen Valley Hospital “should be credited with a good call on airlifting [Juarez-Carrillo] to St. Mary’s,” the patrol said.

The three men in the Civic had just gotten off work and were not wearing seat belts. Rappaport was wearing a seat belt.

“Neither excessive speed nor alcohol was a contributing factor in the crash,” the patrol statement said. “Inattentiveness to quickly changing traffic conditions and a lack of seat belt use were the primary factors in the crash and the extent of injuries.”

Nevertheless, the accident remained under investigation yesterday afternoon.

The State Patrol was assisted by Basalt Fire and Ambulance, as well as Pitkin County Sheriff’s deputies and dispatchers.

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