Officers release name of man killed in vehicle accident

Officers are investigating an accident that occurred just after 9 p.m. last night in The Gorge that killed a man from Nevada.
John West Samford, 70, died after his 2003 Ford F150 lost control, struck a concrete median, hit a tractor-trailer and then rolled several times.
Sgt. John Bottoms with the Arizona Department of Public Safety said Samford was a diabetic who may have had a medical episode before the accident. However, alcohol or speed may also have been a factor.
"Family members described him as an alcoholic, and a lot of beer cans were found at the scene," Bottoms said. "That is consistent with witnesses that described his driving beforehand."
According to witnesses, Samford was driving northbound on Interstate 15 at approximately 60 mph when he sped up to pass an 18-wheeler. Witnesses state that is when the F150 lost control. Samford was found dead at the scene. The driver of the tractor-trailer was not injured and was able to drive the truck after being interviewed by officers.
Officers from the St. George Police Department, Washington County Sheriff's Office and the Mohave County Sheriff's Office assisted the ADPS with traffic control.
Bottoms said they are awaiting toxicology reports to complete the investigation.

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