Fatigue suspected in fatal accident | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Fatigue suspected in fatal accident

Susan Wood, Tahoe Daily Tribune

A toxicology report on the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority controller who died in a car crash off Kingsbury Grade shows no evidence of alcohol or drugs, the Nevada Highway Patrol reported Thursday.

NHP Trooper Troy Lindley pointed to fatigue as a probable reason for why Debra Kirk, 49, of Gardnerville drove off the road and plunged 200 feet down the embankment the morning of Nov. 18.

Kirk and her passenger, LTVA Executive Director Terry LeBan, were ejected from the car. LeBan survived with back injuries. She was rushed to Washoe Medical Center in Reno, where she was treated and released the next day.

Resting in her Gardnerville home, she declined to comment on her health and work status Thursday.

LTVA Chairwoman Deb Howard said board members “haven’t required an answer” on when LeBan feels she is up for coming back to work.

Program Director Sue Barton has been filling in for LeBan in her absence.

“We’re waiting to see the healing process,” Howard said. “Obviously, we miss Terry and the vacuum left by Debra.”

Howard attended the funeral service for Kirk weeks ago. She said many people from the Tahoe Basin attended, despite the nasty weather.

The LTVA may undergo a reorganization, as the tourism group evaluates whether to outsource Kirk’s responsibilities as controller or hire someone new.

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