EUREKA SPRINGS (KFSM) – A cyclist on the trails at the Fat Tire Festival in Eureka Springs died after crashing her bicycle.
Thirty-nine-year-old Laura Wooldridge of Little Rock came out of the woods at the trails at Lake Leatherwood covered in blood, according to bystander Jared Joseph. Joseph said he saw her walk out of a trail carrying her bicycle.
“When I saw her she was covered in blood, and I was like oh gosh she crashed and then when I got up closer to her and realized what she had done, I went wow we have got to get her to somebody pretty quick,” Joseph said.
He said she was walking and talking without too much difficulty.
“She was calm and collected and she kept apologizing to me,” Joseph said.
He said she bleeding profusely from her lip and chin area.
“It was just kind of pouring out, because her face was literally like opened up,” Joseph said.
Joseph called to paramedics and helped get Wooldridge onto an off-road vehicle. From there the Eureka Springs EMS looked over her injuries.
“She needed a higher level of care than we could provide here locally, so we went ahead and sent her to Washington Regional, we contacted air-evac,” Asst. Chief Tom Dransfield said.
Joseph said the helicopter was on the ground for 30 to 45 minutes before taking off with Wooldridge inside. He said racers around the festival were saying Woolridge had been biking for years.
“She was wearing her full race getup,” Joseph said, “Somebody said she’s a veteran rider is what I heard that she had been around the sport a long time…it was just one of those freak things.”
Emergency crews said the accident happened around 9:30 a.m. Authorities said Wooldridge’s body is being transported to Little Rock where she lived.