Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Elk perish when struck by pickup

At least 2 animals killed north of Ketchum

Express Staff Writer

At least two elk were killed on state Highway 75 some 13 miles north of Ketchum early Saturday morning when a herd of the animals wandered into the path of a southbound 1999 Ford Ranger pickup.

The Blaine County Sheriff's Office received a report of the mishap, which occurred just south of the Cathedral Pines turnoff, at about 1:45 a.m.

Sheriff's Lt. Ron Taylor identified the driver as Ray Bryson, 19, of Hailey.

"He was traveling southbound when a herd of elk crossed the highway in front of him," Taylor said. "He attempted to brake, but struck two of the elk."

Taylor said Bryson wasn't injured, but his vehicle sustained damage estimated at $1,400.

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game is typically notified when game is killed along roadways, Taylor said, and the carcasses are salvaged if possible.

A witness to the crash scene told the Idaho Mountain Express that the bodies of two dead cow elk were still lying along the side of the highway as late as 3 p.m. Saturday. The witness reported that a third elk, lying dead a few hundred yards away from the roadway, might have also been struck in the accident and wandered off to die.

Taylor said Bryson is not to blame for the mishap.

"When game comes out on the highway, there's not much you can do about it," Taylor said.

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