Alleged Drunk Driver Plunges Truck Down Embankment In Yellowstone

Visitors near the East Entrance to Yellowstone may have seen more than they bargained for Thursday when an alleged drunk driver was arrested after crashing his red pickup into another truck and then plummeting down an embankment.

Andrew Rossi

August 04, 20232 min read

Yellowstone arrested dude

Vehicle crashes aren’t uncommon in Yellowstone National Park, especially in the busiest months of the season. But a drunk driver going off the road on an August afternoon is unusual, even by the standards of Yellowstone summer incidents.

On Thursday, tourists traveling along the Hayden Valley may have noticed park rangers on the side of the highway with a handcuffed man, while a red pickup was down an embankment more than 20 feet below the road corridor near Trout Creek.

Keith and Joanne Hedgecock from High Point, North Carolina, among those driving toward the national park’s East Entrance when they witnessed the aftermath of the crash as park rangers arrested the truck’s driver, a white man with brown hair.

A short video the Hedgecock’s took shows the man detained by one ranger while two others talk to him, then pans to the right to show the red truck upright on its wheels at the bottom of an embankment.

What Happened?

A Yellowstone ranger at the scene shared details of the incident with the Hedgecocks.

According to Keith Hedgecock, the driver of the truck was allegedly intoxicated and slammed into the back of a black truck, causing significant damage to the left side of that vehicle. The impact sent the red truck off the road down 20 to 30 feet into the Hayden Valley.

The incident happened around 3:45 p.m. Thursday. 

An ambulance was on the scene for a passenger riding in the red truck, who reportedly was the driver’s daughter and was treated for minor injuries sustained in the accident.

No one riding in the black truck appeared to be hurt.

Keith said he couldn’t understand why someone would make such regrettable decisions in a place like Yellowstone.

“It’s a shame that someone would possibly be on the trip of a lifetime and ruin it for themselves and others due to alcohol,” he said.

As of Friday, an arrest record of the incident isn’t available and the identity of the allegedly intoxicated driver is unknown.

Andrew Rossi can be reached at

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Andrew Rossi

Features Reporter