According to a recent report issued by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), only about 3 percent of accidents happen on high-speed divided highways but are far more likely to result in severe injury or fatality than any other type of roadway crash. According to the same survey, as a state, Arizona has one of the highest wrong-way crash rates in the U.S.
Overnight on Monday, September 2nd, AZ Family reports that the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) troopers were dealing with two separate reports of a wrong-way driver along State Route 85 South and the Loop 101.
In the incident along SR 85, it was a Buckeye Valley ambulance driver who stopped the wrong-way driver traveling north in the southbound lanes. The ambulance driver stayed with the wrong-way motorist near milepost 154 until DPS troopers could arrive at the scene.
A spokesperson for the DPS said that the driver was cited for suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. Their identity has not been released.
The second incident took place on the Loop 101 near Bell Road at approximately 2:40 a.m. when the driver of a Toyota Tundra was traveling southbound in the northbound lanes. DPS was able to stop the driver who is identified as James Christian Cheney, 24 of Surprise.
DPS troopers administered a field sobriety test which Cheney failed. Upon inspection of his vehicle, DPS investigators found a handgun, some marijuana, a vape pen and some oil believed to be THC oil.
Cheney was arrested at the scene for DUI. A later blood alcohol test would show that Cheney had a BAC level ranging from 0.124 and 0.126 percent; almost twice the legal limit of 0.08 percent. He was booked into jail on one count of aggravated DUI n a suspended license, one count of possession of marijuana, carrying a deadly weapon after a felony arrest, and other related charges.