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Sat, Aug. 24

Accident shuts down highway; not fatal

Courier/Les Stukenberg

Arizona Department of Public Safety Patrolman Randy Evers looks inside the Ford pickup truck that was part of Tuesday afternoon's two-vehicle collision on Highway 89 in Chino Valley. The collision shut down Highway 89 between Willow Creek Road and Chino Outer Loop "for approximately three hours," according to Chino Valley Police officials.

A traffic accident Tuesday afternoon sent one man to the hospital and closed Highway 89 for about three hours, according to Chino Valley Police officials.

Chino Valley Police Officer Michael Boucher reported that two vehicles – a pickup truck and a tractor trailer – were traveling north on Highway 89 into Chino Valley when the truck tried to turn around on the highway and collided with the tractor trailer.

Police found Albert Hinkle, 59, of Paulden beside his pickup. Some passersby stopped to help him.

"He was partially still in the vehicle after the impact of the accident, and the citizens who stopped to assist

got him out of the vehicle," Boucher said.

Prescott Fire Department Capt. Jeff Knotek said Hinkle suffered head and neck injuries.

Officers had a helicopter fly him to John C. Lincoln Hospital in Phoenix, where he was in critical condition this morning, said Becky Ramsdel, a hospital spokesperson.

The driver of the tractor trailer, John Martinez, 36, of Flagstaff, regained control of his vehicle and stopped on the east side of the highway.

"He (Martinez) was not injured as far as I am aware," Boucher said, adding that the accident is still under investigation.

He said police still have not determined if drugs or alcohol were involved. They have issued no citations as of this morning.

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