FORKS — Firefighters and emergency medical technicians rescued an elderly Forks man who had driven a car off an embankment along Sitkum-Sol Duc Road and spent the night in his vehicle, Clallam County Fire District 1 Chief Bill Paul said Wednesday.
The Clallam County Sheriff’s Office identified the driver as Ezra Buckle, 85.
Buckle was found in a Subaru Outback by his son about 1.5 miles up the road northeast of Forks at about 6:24 a.m. Wednesday, Paul said.
He remained in Forks Community Hospital on Wednesday afternoon.
Forks-area Fire District 1 crews secured the Subaru with a command rig and a winch using a tree and extricated Buckle from the car, Paul said.
There were no other occupants of the vehicle.
Buckle was treated by medics and was taken to Forks Community Hospital.
Clallam County Sheriff’s Sgt. Ed Anderson said Buckle likely suffered from exposure.
Temperatures in Forks reached a low of 48 shortly after midnight Wednesday and remained in the low 50s until dawn, according to National Weather Service observations.
Buckle was expected to remain at Forks Community Hospital through Friday, said his grandson, Kyle Gagner.
“They’re going to run some tests on him,” Gagner said.
The vehicle Buckle was driving came to a rest in a wooded, brushy area just a few feet from the edge of a cliff on the south side of Sitkum-Sol Duc Road, Paul said.
It was unclear why Buckle left the roadway, Paul said. Speed was not a factor in the wreck, he added.
Fire District 1 responded with two fire trucks, two command vehicles and eight personnel. Forks EMS and the Clallam County Sheriff’s Office were also on scene.
The Subaru was pulled out of the embankment and towed to West End Motors, Paul said.
Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56450, or at [email protected].