Cody Brickell, 18, victim in Four Mile Road fatality
Risky driving down a steep and curvy stretch of Four Mile Road led to a single-car accident Saturday evening that killed Cody Brickell, 18, of Glenwood Springs.
The Colorado State Patrol said high speed was a factor in the crash. Whether or not alcohol was involved remains under investigation.
The State Patrol reported that Brickell was driving alone down Four Mile Road, a mile below Sunlight Mountain Resort, in a 2001 Pontiac Grand Am. He had attended the KMTS “Bikes to Mics” Country Showdown event Saturday afternoon at the ski area.
At about 8:05 p.m., Brickell attempted to pass two vehicles, crossing the double yellow line, and failed to negotiate a right curve. The Pontiac went off the left side of the road for 55 feet, came back on the road and skidded for 72 feet, and then ran off the right side of the road for 58 feet.
The State Patrol reported that the vehicle vaulted 54 feet down the embankment, flipping once and rolling three times, landing on its wheels in Four Mile Creek.
Brickell was not wearing a seat belt, and was partially ejected from the car in the crash.
His close friend, Chris Toler, was driving one of the vehicles that Brickell tried to pass. He stopped, made his way down the embankment to the wreckage and pulled Brickell’s body free of the crash moments before the vehicle erupted in flames.
Brickell’s other close friends, Chris Rey, Leon Olson and Ryan Bolitho, were following in their vehicles, and stopped at the scene.
“There wasn’t much we could do. Toler told us not to go down there,” Bolitho said.
Within 12 minutes of calling for help, the Glenwood Springs Fire Department arrived at the scene with an ambulance, fire engine and water tender. The smoke from the burning car could be seen two miles down the road, and authorities at the scene worried that the car fire would spread into a wildfire.
Firefighters climbed down the steep embankment with a fire hose and contained the fire to the vehicle, and extinguished the car fire.
The road was closed at the scene of the crash for about a half hour.
Firefighters stayed on the scene until midnight to help the Garfield County Sheriff’s Department, Colorado State Patrol and the Garfield County Coroner’s Office.
The Carbondale and Rural Fire District sent an ambulance and crew to Glenwood Springs to provide back-up for in-town calls.
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Roaring Fork School District Superintendent Rob Stein announced his resignation Friday, effective at the end of the school year, saying he will take “a personal sabbatical” next year.