Cuenca expat Roger Seltzer was killed early Tuesday morning when a horse fell on top of the car he was driving, north of Cajamarca, Peru. According to police, the horse apparently lost its footing on a steep mountain slope and tumbled onto the highway.
Seltzer, 39, who police said was a retired civil engineer from Alberta, Canada, was driving alone at the time of the accident. They reported that Seltzer was an Ecuadorian resident living in Cuenca.
Seltzer’s girlfriend, Laura Eavenson, also a Cuenca resident, said that Seltzer was a gifted poet and oboe player and a frequent competitor in strongman contests in Canada and the U.S. He was champion of the 2005 Alberta Strongman event, she said.
Police called the freak accident rare but not unheard of. “We have many highway accidents with livestock, some with human fatalities, but these usually involve animals in the roadway,” said a statement from Peruvian police. “Accidents involving falling animals are rare but with the mountainous terrain in the area and with the number of livestock grazing on steep slopes, it is always possible. It has happened before.” The statement added that recent rains may have been a contributing factor since it made footing on hillsides unstable.
Seltzer’s sons have been notified of the accident and are en route from Canada to recover their father’s body, police say. The horse also died in the accident, police reported.