By Tim Eberly
A Havre teenager seriously injured in one-car accident Friday afternoon was transported to a Great Falls hospital Wednesday morning for further treatment.
Ryan Safley, 16, a junior at Havre High School, is in fair condition in the intensive care unit at Benefis Health Care in Great Falls, according to Kurt Miller, a hospital spokesman.
Two others youths a 17-year-old and an 18-year-old were injured in the accident but have been released from Northern Montana Hospital.
"Safley is the one we are most concerned about right now because of his condition," said Justin Bryeans, a youth pastor at the Assembly of God Church who chaperoned a ski trip Friday to Canada for more than 20 members of the church youth group. The youths were heading home in a line of cars when the accident occurred.
Ryan Juers, the driver of the vehicle, said Safley "will be home by the end of the week."
Safley and Marvin Franson, 17, were ejected through passenger windows of a Jeep Cherokee at 5:14 p.m. Friday after the southbound vehicle veered off Route 232 four miles north of Havre and overturned.
Safley suffered several broken ribs, a broken jaw and collarbone and internal bruising and bleeding, said Juers and Nathan Reitan, who was in one of the lead vans with eight other occupants.
Franson suffered a dislocated and partially fractured left elbow, Franson said.
Juers, 18, suffered a 6-inch gash to the head. He was not ejected.
Juers said Wednesday he thinks the accident was caused by a blown tire. He said an earlier report that he'd suffered a head injury while skiing at the Hidden Valley ski resort and may have fallen asleep on the way home was incorrect.
"I had a run-in with another skier and I suffered a hip injury,'' Juers said.
A medical team at the ski hill checked him out and told him he could drive home, he said.
"What we are pretty confident, as a cause, is that a tire had blown out," Juers said.
After he heard a noise, the vehicle hit the ditch, flipped end over end once or twice, and then flipped side over side one time, he said.