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Walsenburg woman dies in Hwy 69 accident

by Eric Mullens
WALSENBURG — A single vehicle traffic accident Wednesday, Nov. 30 on Hwy. 69 approximately three miles outside of Walsenburg killed the lone occupant of the vehicle involved.
The small SUV was traveling northwest when the accident occurred at approximately 2:50 pm. The Colorado State Patrol reports, the 1998 Toyota Rav4 was traveling westbound when it traveled off the right side of the road. The driver attempted to reenter the roadway, but collided with a road sign and the end of the bridge railing. The Toyota continued northbound and came to rest on its wheels resting on the bridge.
The Toyota’s driver, identified as 51-year old Nicki Papez of Walsenburg, was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash. The driver died on scene from the injuries sustained in the crash.
Huerfano County Sheriff’s personnel and local emergency medical technicians also responded to the scene.
Crews from the Colorado Department of Transportation were also dispatched to test the integrity of the bridge itself following the accident.
Traffic was diverted away from the fatal accident scene at approximately mile marker 1, at the cut off to CR 590.