Man dies after driving off road near Virginia City |

Man dies after driving off road near Virginia City

by F.T. Norton

A man was killed late Tuesday night when he drove off the roadway on Highway 341, three miles south of Virginia City.

The body of Bruce Jenkins, 49, was found about 7:11 a.m. Wednesday morning by a passerby who discovered the wreckage of Jenkins’ 1987 Toyota truck 400 feet down the embankment near mile marker 5.

A preliminary investigation revealed the accident occurred sometime between late Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. An autopsy Wednesday afternoon was unable to determine time of death, said Lyon County Sheriff’s Deputy Jeff Peebles. He said toxicology results could provide more information, but said alcohol wasn’t a likely factor.

“We have no indication of alcohol in the vehicle,” he said.

Trooper Mark Zacha of the Nevada Highway Patrol, who was in charge of the accident investigation, said Jenkins possibly fell asleep at the wheel and failed to complete the turn.

“There is no indication of braking prior to the vehicle leaving the highway,” he said.

Accident reconstructionists estimate Jenkins’ speed at 50 mph.

The accident happened just over the Storey County line in Lyon County.

Storey County Sheriff Pat Whitten said Jenkins has a home address in Sun Valley, but was well known in Virginia City, where he held various bartending positions. Storey deputies were given the task of notifying Jenkins’ brother in Sparks of the accident, he said.

“Where he was coming from and where he was going to, I really couldn’t speak to,” Whitten said.

Troopers will inspect the vehicle for mechanical problems, Zacha said.

Contact F.T. Norton at or 881-1213.