It took more than five hours to locate a man involved in a rollover accident Tuesday and details remain as fuzzy as the memory of the man who called police to report the accident.
Around 7:40 a.m. the Gila County Sheriff’s Office received a call from a man who said he had rolled his white Dodge pickup, but he didn’t know where he was, said Tonto Rim Search and Rescue Commander Bill Pitterle.
“We were worried that he had injured himself or his head and that (he) couldn’t remember where he was,” Pitterle said.
The man’s cell phone company tracked the cell signal to the Mount Ord cell tower. This bit of information hardly helped searchers, because the area covered by that cell tower is vast. A helicopter scoured the ground for the white pickup from the air. After searching the Mount Ord area, searchers got another clue from the cell phone company who said the signal had come from around 29 miles away in the southwest quadrant, Pitterle said.
Searchers plotted a circle around Mount Ord 29 miles out and planned to send crews throughout the area to search for the man.
Around 1:10 p.m., the Tonto Rim Search and Rescue team was called to search the roads in the southwest quadrant.
“We were heading down there when a citizen found him in the Cave Creek area,” Pitterle said.
The man was found on Forest Service Road 41 around 2:20 p.m. He reportedly refused medical treatment and his condition or what made him forget where he was is unknown, officials said.