The Payson office of the Arizona Department of Public Safety had an unfortunately busy weekend.
Officers responded to two serious accidents, one a fatality on Highway 260 east of Christopher Creek, and a single-vehicle accident with injuries on southbound Highway 87 near Slate Creek.
The fatality was at about 1:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 27 at milepost 280.4, according to Sgt. John Whetten of the DPS.
A group of eight motorcyclists were headed for Greer. One of the party, after making a curve, continued to drift from the inside, eastbound lane to the outside lane, hit the guard rail and rode against it until falling into it. The biker, Maria Elena Flock-Cottam, 53, of Bermuda Dunes, Calif., was killed by the impact.
Whetten said the woman was wearing a helmet and full, leather biking gear, but went through two guard rails.
She was transported to Payson Regional Medical Center by a DPS Ranger helicopter and administered both cardiopulmonary resuscitation and defibrillation by emergency personnel, but was pronounced dead on arrival.
Whetten said the victim was an inexperienced rider, having clocked only about 1,500 miles on a new Harley-Davidson.
The other accident had a much better outcome. It occurred at milepost 228.2 on southbound Highway 87, at about 2:20 p.m., Sept. 28.
Ashley Lynn Zuber, 18, formerly of Payson, now of Chandler, had the left, rear tire of her sport-utility vehicle go out, causing the accident, according to Officer Charles Dimbat.
Zuber was air-lifted to Scottsdale Healthcare hospital where she was treated and later released, Dimbat said.