Byron man survives Sunday night crash

A Byron man is fortunate the car he was driving did not wind up in the Sidon Canal after it left the highway and rolled west of Byron Sunday night.

Lovell firemen remove the roof from a Buick sedan as part of the process to extricate Chris Day following his crash west of Byron on the banks of the Sidon Canal Sunday night.

According to Wyoming Highway Patrol Trooper Rich Scovel, Christopher Day, 28, of Byron was driving about two miles west of Byron on U.S. 14A Sunday around 8:45 p.m. just before the Sidon Canal crosses under the highway when his Buick four-door sedan, which was traveling west, drifted off the right side of the road while failing to negotiate a curve and stuck a delineator post.

Day overcorrected, crossed both lanes of traffic and went into a broadside skid as it left the highway to the south side. The vehicle rolled at least once and perhaps twice, Scovel said, and landed on its wheels facing east at the edge of the canal just before the canal bridge. The trooper said the edge of the vehicle came to rest two to three feet from the water and was technically in the canal – the marshy portion of the canal.

Members of the Lovell Volunteer Fire Dept., the North Big Horn Hospital Ambulance Service and the Big Horn County Sheriff’s Dept. responded to the scene and worked to extricate Day from the vehicle, removing the roof and the driver’s side door. Day was then transported to North Big Horn Hospital with internal and back injuries, Scovel said, but was expected to be released Monday or Tuesday.

Day’s injuries were not life-threatening, Scovel said, adding that the man was fortunate because he was not wearing a seat belt and he could have ended up in the canal.

Alcohol is suspected to be a factor in the crash, the trooper said, although official results await the return of a report from Wyoming Chemical Testing, where a blood sample was sent.

“All indications are that he had been drinking,” Scovel said, adding that a REDDI report had been called in regarding Day around 8:30 p.m. “He was very fortunate. He admitted he had been drinking. It’s a matter of to what extent.”

Day was ticketed for failure to wear a seat belt and charged with driving under the influence to the point of being incapable of safely operating a motor vehicle, Scovel said.

By David Peck