Biker hits guardrail, passenger down hill

JEROME -- A motorcyclist and passenger lost a battle with powerful winds Monday afternoon. The couple from Connecticut had borrowed the motorcycle of Phoenix friend and was climbing SR 89A toward Jerome. They were making the long climb, just below the Old Jerome High School, when a strong gust of wind shook the bike

The strong wind forced the driver to correct. He told Jerome Police Chief Alan Muma that the gust then stopped, but he had overcorrected into the guardrail.

The driver stayed with the bike and suffered leg injuries, but the woman passenger was thrown over the guardrail and down the embankment. Muma said, fortunately, the woman was caught by a mesquite tree or the fall would have been more serious.

The wind slammed the Harley Davidson against the highway guardrail.

The two-lane highway was reduced to a single lane for about an hour to allow for emergency vehicles to clean up the accident. The mid-40s bike riders were taken to Verde Valley Medical Center for treatment.

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