F alling asleep behind the wheel appears to be the cause of a single-car accident on the morning of Oct. 13 in Granville, police said.
The Washington County Sheriff’s Office said two people were in the black 2003 Lincoln Navigator SUV when it crashed just after 11 a.m.
The occupants, William Corbett, 70, and his son 26-year-old Blessing Corbett of Taylor Hill Road, were taken to Glens Falls Hospital as a precaution and later released without injury, Sheriff’s Deputy Dave Buxton said.
Buxton said Corbett told him the crash took place following a long car trip from White River Junction, Vt.
No citations were issued in the crash and police said drugs or alcohol were not a factor.
The Navigator left the roadway as it traveled southwest on Route 149 yards past the Parkland Alpaca Farm on the north side of the road approximately 200 yards from the intersection with Route 22.
Buxton said the SUV somehow managed to remain upright when it drove over the wire-type guardrail and embankment past a telephone pole and continued for approximately 30 yards before slamming to a stop in a drainage ditch. The guardrail and posts were knocked down over a span of more than 25 yards. No skid marks were found at the scene.
The bank drops off steeply after leaving the roadway and Buxton said he surveyed the scene and was surprised the vehicle remained upright given the sharp drop from the road surface.
It appeared the low speed of the SUV as Corbett fell asleep and it left the road kept it upright; if the vehicle had been going faster it likely would have flipped over, Buxton said.
Buxton credited the fact that both occupants were wearing seatbelts with preventing more serious injuries. Granville Engine and Hose and Hook & Ladder fire companies and the Granville Rescue Squad responded to the scene along with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office. Part of Route 149 was closed for about an hour while rescue personnel worked to remove the two victims from the ditch. The SUV was removed from the scene by Warner’s Auto.