Orangevale man describes surviving 120 ft. crash down Folsom Dam embankment

8:44 PM, Aug 6, 2013   |    comments
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Photo Gallery: Truck plummets 150 ft. to base of Folsom Dam, breaks in half (PHOTOS)
Christopher McGuigan survived after his truck crashed down 120 feet near the Folsom Dam.

ROSEVILLE, CA - Through a wired-shut jaw, 26-year-old Christopher McGuigan said he is thankful to be alive after his truck crashed down 120 feet near the Folsom Dam.

"I was given, pretty much a second chance," McGuigan said from his hospital bed at Sutter-Roseville Medical Center.

Around 6 a.m. on July 30, McGuigan was heading to work along the Folsom Lake Crossing in his 1994 Chevy pick-up when he somehow veered off the road over the dam. His truck fell 10 stories before crashing into the ground below.

The truck crushed like an accordion with McGuigan inside. He said he doesn't remember the crash nor does he know what happened.

"Seeing the pictures of my truck it's like, 'wow, that person really made it?'" McGuigan said.

He made it, but just barely.

"He was, with blood from head to toe, and he was just saying he was scared," McGuigan's father Perry McGuigan said.

Perry McGuigan was one of the first people to see him at the hospital.

"I'm still in shock that he's right there," Perry McGuigan said.

Chris McGuigan said he blacked out after the crash and didn't come to until the next day. His list of injuries is extensive.

"I broke my right leg in two different spots; I broke my pelvis I believe in two different spots; I broke four ribs and I fractured my shoulder blade; I broke my nose; I broke my jaw in two places and I believe they said I fractured my head," Chris McGuigan explained.

While his physical pain is masked by medication, Chris McGuigan's deepest scars are emotional wounds. He said mornings are the hardest.

"It's just crazy to think that I was in such a bad accident and the way I'm healing," McGuigan said. "Everyday comes and it just goes, and I figured I'd be in more pain than I really am."

Remarkably, McGuigan's doctors said he will walk again.

For now, his family patiently and gratefully waits by his side at Sutter-Roseville Medical Center.

On the end of his hospital bed, hangs a first place medal that his 12-year-old brother earned while playing in a soccer tournament he dedicated to his big brother.

"You never know what life is going to throw at [you]," said McGuigan.

McGuigan said he is thankful for each breath he takes, and after surviving what seemed like the impossible, he has a different outlook on life.

"Cherish every moment you have with your family and friends because obviously, I never thought in a million years that I'd be in a car accident like this," McGuigan said.

McGuigan's family said he did not have drugs or alcohol in his system, and cell phone records show he was not using his cell phone during the accident.


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