WEST GLACIER, Montana, Aug. 13, 2019 (Gephardt Daily) — A 14-year-old Utah girl died Monday from injuries she sustained when falling rocks struck a vehicle in Glacier National Park in Montana.
A news release from Glacier National Park said that rockfall near the east tunnel on Going-to-the-Sun Road struck the vehicle in which the girl and four other people were traveling westbound at approximately 7 p.m. The family was visiting from Utah, the news release said.
“The rocks hit the top of the vehicle and shattered the rear windshield, fatally injuring the girl and also injuring her parents and two other children in the vehicle,” the news release said. “A.L.E.R.T. air ambulance responded, but was unable to airlift the girl because of her unstable condition. Flight paramedics traveled with her via ground ambulance to Kalispell, Montana.”
The girl died while being transported to a local hospital. The two adults suffered significant bruises and were transported to area hospitals by ground ambulance. The two other children in the vehicle had minor injuries and also went by ambulance to the hospital.
“The rocks that hit the vehicle were between fist-sized and 12 inches in diameter,” the news release said. “The park estimates that the amount of debris could have filled the bed of a pickup truck. The rocks fell from an unknown height from the mountains above the road.”
The girl’s name and hometown will be released once family notifications have been completed, the news release said.
Going-to-the-Sun Road was closed at the east tunnel for approximately three hours on Monday night while the park road crew cleared the rocks and a tow truck removed the vehicle, officials said.
The last fatal injury from rockfall on the Going-to-the-Sun Road was in 1996 when a vehicle was struck by a falling rock in the Rimrocks section of the road, just west of Logan Pass.
“The park extends its deepest condolences to the girl’s family, and thanks its partner emergency care providers for the significant response,” the news release said.
Gephardt Daily will have more on this developing story as information is made available.