Couple, dog survive car accident 200

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 2, 2005

feet off mountain

Staff Report

A Suffolk couple and their dog escaped serious injury after their sport utility vehicle plummeted 200 feet down the side of Afton Mountain near Charlottesville in Thursday.

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William Copeland and his wife, Jeanette, were driving east on Interstate 64 when they pulled onto a scenic overlook at about noon Thursday, police said. The SUV struck a guardrail, flipped and tumbled down the mountainside.

Copeland told state police that he remembered hitting the guardrail and going airborne.

Witnesses reported seeing the car flip end-over-end as it fell. Passing motorists called 911, and rescue squads from Albemarle County and Waynesboro used rope to haul the couple and their dog up the mountainside, according to a state police report.

The Copelands were treated and released from the University of Virginia Medical Center for minor injuries. Efforts to reach family members on Friday were unsuccessful.