A 41-year-old man killed Tuesday in a crash outside of Miles City has been identified.
Daniel Lee Swift, a resident of Miles City, died of blunt force trauma after the vehicle he was driving left the road on Highway 489.
“He was also severely burned, but we concluded he was thrown from the vehicle prior to first responders arriving,” said Custer County Sheriff Pat Roos, who also serves as the county coroner.
Swift was traveling in a Ford Mustang with one passenger, a 36-year-old man, when he came to a left-hand turn. The car left the road and went into a broadside skid, according to preliminary details from Montana Highway Patrol. The force of the crash ejected both men from the car as it overturned into a ditch.
Neither of the two were wearing seat belts, and the Mustang caught fire during the wreck. Swift was pronounced dead at the scene.
The passenger was taken to Holy Rosary Healthcare in Miles City to be treated for non-life threatening injuries, MHP Trooper Matthew Cartwright told the Gazette on Wednesday. The investigation into the cause of the crash is still ongoing, he said, but speed is suspected to be a factor.
Sheriff Roos will accompany Swift’s body to the Montana Department of Justice crime lab in Billings for a full autopsy. Roos also clarified that an initial report of Swift being a Laurel resident was mistaken.
More than 115 people have died on Montana’s roads, according to data from MHP. A second man died Tuesday, a 42-year-old from Malta, Montana, in a rollover crash near Whitewater. Fatigue is suspected to be a factor, according to a report from MHP Trooper Cade Hill.