Drunk driver swerves to miss deer, minivan catches on fire

Norwalk woman tests over legal limit for alcohol.
Cary Ashby
Nov 11, 2013


An intoxicated Norwalk driver who reportedly swerved to miss a deer this weekend had her minivan catch on fire.

Carmen L. Wiegel, 35, of 61 N. Foster St., was charged with driving under the influence and failure to control.

"She was drunk," Huron County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Ted Patrick said.

The sheriff's office received a call at 7:01 a.m. Saturday from a caller who reported a 2002 Nissan Quest hit a deer and caught fire. The accident happened in the 4800 block Gibbs Road east of Ohio 601.

"She says she swerved to miss a deer. She was able to get her vehicle back on the roadway and it caught on fire," Patrick said.

Dispatchers received multiple 9-1-1 calls shortly after the accident. It's unclear how the minivan caught fire.

The Norwalk Fire Department responded to extinguish the vehicle fire. Firefighters said the minivan was "fully involved" upon arrival at 7:19 a.m. The crew, which was on scene two hours, also cleaned up an oil spill from the accident and assisted D & K Towing with loading the vehicle.

Sgt. Steve Shupp investigated the crash. Patrick said as the deputy interviewed Wiegel and she completed paperwork, he noticed the driver "kept smoking cigarette after cigarette" and when Shupp stepped closer to her, he also smelled the odor of alcohol on her breath.

"She failed some field sobriety tests at the scene of the crash site and then was taken to the sheriff's office," Patrick said.

"She tested at a .110 (percent)," he said about Wiegel's blood-alcohol content level on a breath test.

The legal limit for drivers in Ohio is .08 percent.

"She was released to a sober party," Patrick said.

Wiegel doesn't have any prior DUI convictions, according to Norwalk Municipal Court and sheriff's office records.



Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).




. ..




Alright well I'm fighting a useless battle tmro will come and new things will happen and give new openings to new comments.

oh heck


oh heck





I have better things to do than sit on here all day arguing with u! I was @ the hospital with my mom and Carmen and her drama were the last thing on my mind today!!!! I have my name on here, ur the one hiding behind user name and ur computer! Not me! If I have something to say I say it!

oh heck

Clearly you did not get my comment above this is not sara nor is this bill I will remain nameless. I am sorry that this happened to your sister and I do apologize for any thing that may have hurt her in any way through out my comments on this article. She is going through a lot and I can only imagine how sorry she is. I am going to be a bigger person and stop commenting and feuding with you. She can only go from this to become a bigger and better person


One time I got REALLY drunk and went to bed late. Woke up the next morning having to go to work...was still quite drunk, a little nauseas and shouldn't have been driving. But I thought "oh I'm just hungover." So I drive to work. I didn't get in an accident or anything but I could've, I suppose. I was 21, young and stupid. Not 35 with children at home. Hope she's okay and I sure hope it doesn't happen again.


What is the real issue that is not being discussed is the fact that she chose to get behind the wheel off a vehicle and drive while under the influence! My brother, playing in our front yard was hit and killed by a drunk driver who lost control and swerved into our yard!! No-one cares if you drink, that's not the point of contention. The issue is and has to be, don't drink and drive. Lives depend on it. I am a witness to that. My family are witnesses to that...please don't drink and drive.




How is the deer?